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Portmore man believed to have been abducted

Relatives and friends of Marvel Brown, 22, who has not been seen since he left his home in Independence City, Portmore, on July 15 to assist a round robin in Kingston, are losing hope that he is still alive.

The only contact they have had came from two ransom demand phone calls. Brown has been described by residents as a good, cheerful youth who has never been involved in any wrongdoing, and was always willing to help out with community projects. Desreen Wright, whose event Brown was assisting, said he was happy when he came to the party.

"He reached about 10:30 p.m. He was in the bar with me helping me out, until the crowd die down [and] he said to me that he was going to sit in the car that was parked on the road near the gate," disclosed Wright. She said minutes later when her daughter went out to invite him back to the party, he was talking on his cell phone and indicated that he would return to venue as soon as he was finished with the call.

"Another 10 minutes passed and we did not see him come back, so my daughter went back outside to see if he was there, and it was at this time we realised that the car was gone. My daughter texted him right away to find out where he was, but there was no reply and that was the last time we see him or hear from him," said an emotional Wright.

Brown's friend and co-worker Michael Chambers told THE STAR that he received a call from his friend's cell phone about 1 a.m. A strange voice demanded a ransom of $50,000 for his release.

"The person didn't stay on the phone long, he just asked for the ransom and hang up right away," said Chambers. Brown's father Charlie later received another ransom call.

"The person blocked the number and say him want $350,000 or him a go kill [Marvel]," he said. "If them kill him, just let mi find him body to give him a proper burial."

He described his son as a peaceful, kind and good man who has never been in trouble.

Acting divisional commander for the St Catherine South Police Division, Superintendent Hopeton Nicholson, told THE STAR that his department is coordinating with the St Andrew South police in the investigation.