Argentine filmmaker Tristan Bauer and president of the National Public Media of Argentina, was kidnapped in the capital of Buenos Aires yesterday (February 8) by three assailants, as he was intercepted while driving home. The incident occurred in the suburb of Saaverdra.
Bauer, director of Channel 7, Encounter and National Radio, pulled out of his car when gunmen pointed a firearm at him and pushed him into the back seat of a vehicle. They then demanded his family pay a ransom and persuaded him by proceeding to beat him profusely. Within an hour, Bauer's wife had paid the ransom, which was an undisclosed amount. Subsequently, Bauer was released.
COMMENT: During the first quarter of 2011, 28 short-duration, “express kidnappings” occurred in the province of Buenos Aires, according to an analysis by Centro de Estudios Nueva Mayoria. That’s a slight increase from the same period last year  and indicates the first three months of 2011 were the worst since 2004.
Please note, though, that the incidents described above are only express kidnappings REPORTED by the media. Consequently, this number could actually be much larger.
Many victims of express kidnappings" often take great efforts, if at all possible, to NOT report a kidnapping to police or the media, largely because of the notoriety that would draw attention to the fact that they've been kidnapped in the past, thus identifying them as a wealthy target to other kidnappers.
And yes, there have been case where a victim has been kidnapped more than once, particularly if they don't change their security awareness.
Most criminals who engage in "express kidnapping" and other forms of economic abduction reply heavily on targets that are not deliberately focused on people around them. "Surveillance detection" is a learned skill that I have taught for years, and it works, in terms of alerting would-be victims of an impending threat.
Additionally, as strategy against "express kidnapping," would-be victims who know they would be a lucrative target for kidnappers, should consider a partially or fully ballistic-resistant vehicle. Such vehicles now are available in a number of low-profile makes and models, which can dramatically reduce the potentiality of being kidnapped.
Any person of means who might consider themselves to be a good target of an "express kidnapping" would be well-served to have a discussion with their family about the possibility of being kidnapped and to work out every detail on family communications, how a ransom payment would be made and whether they would want police and/or media attention.
Saavedra is a suburb of Buenos Aires. It is located in the Northern end of the city proper, close to Belgrano and Villa Urquiza. Its northern border is General Paz Avenue. Among the main features of the neighborhood is Saavedra Park, which has large picnic areas and sports facilities. Many inhabitants of Buenos Aires pass through Saavedra en route to their weekends in the country.
As a matter of interest, the 2005 Venezuelan film, SECUESTRO EXPRESS, directed by Jonathan Jakubowicz. The motion picture accurately depicts the tactics of an "express kidnapping," albeit much more melodramatic.
SECUESTRO EXPRESS was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the British Independent Film Awards.