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2/7/15

Breaking: Mine workers kidnapped from Torex Gold (TXG.to) project (UPDATED)

According to early reports, yesterday Friday between 10 and 15 employees working at the Torex Gold (TXG.to) Morelos mine were kidnapped by a gang of around 20 people some 300 metres from the entrance to the mine. Their whereabouts are still unknown today, Saturday afternoon.

UPDATE: Latest reports put the number of kidnapped employees at 12, with 11 of them members of the management team. They were ambushed at around 7pm local time yesterday evening by an armed gang who are now demanding a ransom payment. The kidnapped members of staff are apparently Mexican nationals from Coahuila, Michoacán, San Luis Potosí and Sonora states.

And don't say that IKN didn't try to warn you all.

UPDATE 2: An un-named director Gabriela Sánchez, VP of investor relations at Torex (TXG.to) spoke to Mexican press a few minutes ago and said that only one of the people kidnapped works at the mine. She said that to this point the company has received no ransom demand. She also says that the company will publish a news release in a few hours' time.

UPDATE 3: Here's the first English language wire report, out just a few minutes ago. Extract:
There were conflicting reports Saturday on how many were taken and whether some were workers for Media Luna, a Canadian-owned gold mining project in the municipality of Cocula, where police officers were charged with participating in the student killings.A state prosecutor's spokesmen said 12 people were taken, including some mine workers. A second government official said that 19 were taken and eight later released and that those held included some mine workers. Both insisted on not being quoted by name because the case had not been officially announced. The state official said the kidnappers were disguised as police or military.But the president of Toronto-based Torex Gold Resources Inc., which owns the mine, said the reports about his employees being abducted were false. Fred Stanford told The Associated Press he had confirmed that nine of his workers who were reported kidnapped were not taken and that he had conflicting information on a 10th employee."One may be involved, but because of a family matter. It has nothing to do with the mine," said Stanford, who is also Torex Gold's chief executive officer.Stanford said Torex Gold has about 250 employees in the area, but at least 1,000 more who are contract workers.

UPDATE 4: Ok, there's something strange about this story. Here's the latest report in which high ranking officers of the Federal Police in Guerrero (who are, for the record, the same body of people that tried to cover up the disappearance of the 43 students in November 2014) have said that there has been no kidnapping at all and the whole story is a lie. They go on to say that the whole thing is due to "communication problems" and at this point there is only one person known to be missing, a worker at the mine who was in the field and nobody knows exactly where he is but with the implcation he was out doing his job normally. To quote the police spokesperson (translated), "The story about the kidnapping of 12 people is a lie...up to this point the report is false."

However, one of the employees at the mine, Juan Zuñiga Méndez, said this afternoon that the commander of the local Community police force told him that a group of armed men had kidnapped workers at the mine while they were travelling in a shuttle bus service. In Zuñiga's words, "They told me that not only workers but also civilians who were commuting from their day's work (had been kidnapped) and to date we don't have the confirmed total of people, but it is a fact."

UPDATE 5: This is a very interesting report on events, which names regional head of the narco gang "La Familia" as the person behind the kidnapping and gives a lot of details on what happened.