Former Brazilian international Marcelinho Carioca, who played for Ligue 1 club AC Ajaccio in 2004-05, was kidnapped and held hostage for several hours in São Paulo on Monday.
The 52-year-old was found safe and sound after being released by his captors. He had been reported missing after attending a concert at the Corinthians Arena in São Paulo on Sunday. His car was found abandoned nearby on Monday.
“Marcelinho was found walking in a street in Itaquaquecetuba, near where the car was found. He was released by the kidnapper and is now going to the police station,” said the Secretary of Public Security, delegate Nico Gonçalves.
Five suspects have been arrested in connection with the kidnapping, including three men and two women. Two witnesses are also being questioned.
In a video circulating on social media, Marcelinho claims that he was kidnapped by the husband of a woman with whom he was having an affair.
The kidnapping is the latest in a series of high-profile crimes in Brazil. In recent months, there have been several high-profile kidnappings of wealthy individuals and businessmen.
The Brazilian government has pledged to crack down on crime, but the country’s homicide rate remains one of the highest in the world.