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July 24, 2014

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FBI: 3 cartel members accused of kidnapping SC man

Updated Wednesday, July 16, 2014 | 8:23 a.m.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The FBI says three men affiliated with a Mexican drug cartel are accused of kidnapping a South Carolina man and holding him for ransom in a dispute over $200,000 in marijuana.

The FBI says the man was kidnapped July 9 and rescued Tuesday by agents after they tracked him to a home in North Carolina. The St. Matthews man hasn't been identified. He is not in custody.

FBI agent Dave Thomas says the kidnappers posed as police officers and abducted the man. He was found in Roseboro, North Carolina, about 160 miles northeast of his hometown.

The FBI says Juan Manuel Fuentes-Morales, Ruben Ceja-Rangel, Luis Castro Villeda appeared in federal court in Raleigh on Wednesday on a charge of conspiracy to kidnap. Court records listed no attorneys.