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Father of Atlanta prosecutor held hostage by street gang for five nights


Photo From Atlanta Journal Constitution.

From AJC…

The alleged kidnappers of a North Carolina man rescued late Wednesday from a southeast Atlanta apartment complex sent the victim’s wife a photo of him tied up and threatened to torture and dismember him, then return him to her in six boxes, federal authorities said Thursday.

An elite FBI team rescued 63-year-old Frank Arthur Janssen from the Forest Cove Apartments on New Town Circle in southeast Atlanta just before midnight Wednesday, FBI spokeswoman Shelley Lynch said in a statement. He was kidnapped from his home in Wake Forest, N.C., on Saturday.

John Strong, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Charlotte office, said at a Thursday press briefing that Janssen’s kidnapping was related to Kelvin Melton, a reputed high-ranking member of the “Bloods” gang who is currently serving a sentence of life without parole in a North Carolina prison after being prosecuted by Janssen’s daughter, an assistant district attorney in Wake County, N.C.
Melton was convicted in October 2012 on a charge of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, which made him a violent habitual offender.

“I can tell you that Mr. Janssen was targeted by a group as part of an elaborate kidnapping plot,” Strong said. “Specific demands were sent to Mr. Janssen’s family for the benefit of Kelvin Melton.”

Janssen “spent five nights in the hands of a group of very dangerous people,” Strong said. “We can only imagine the uncertainty, confusion and fear he experienced.”

Thomas Walker, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, said five people have been charged in the kidnapping: Jenna Paulin Martin, 21, Tiana Maynard, 20, Jevante Price, Michael Montreal Gooden, 21, and Clifton James Roberts, 19.
All of the suspects are in custody in Atlanta, said Don Connelly, Walker’s spokesman.

They appeared in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge Gerrilyn Brill on Thursday afternoon. A detention hearing was scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Tuesday to determine if they should be held without bond. The suspects will be tried in North Carolina, authorities said.