MANILA, Philippines - Philippine authorities have rescued four abducted Taiwanese citizens and arrested eight fellow Taiwanese accused of kidnapping them, the justice department said Thursday.
The four, including one woman, were locked up in a Manila motel room, with two chained to a bed post while the suspects waited for ransom payments from the victims' relatives in Taiwan, the National Bureau of Investigation said.
The bureau's agents raided the central Manila motel room on Tuesday and rescued the hostages, arresting eight Taiwanese suspects along with one female Philippine suspect.
They were armed with a baseball bat and one of the victims had an unspecified head wound, the bureau said in a statement.
"This is a major accomplishment of the bureau because we are able to neutralise a kidnap-for-ransom syndicate whose operators are foreigners," bureau director Nonnatus Rojas said in the statement.
The bureau, which is the law enforcement arm of the justice department, said it was tipped off that a Taiwanese businessman, his wife and two business partners had been abducted by other Taiwanese.
It was unclear when and where the abduction took place.
The Taiwanese suspects were identified as Lai Hung-Chang, 35, Li Ting-Chien, 23, Hung Cheng-Hao, 24, Zeng Jyun-Kai, 28, Chan Hung-Chuan, 34, Wei Ming Lio, Lin Cheng Cho and Yan Pen Yang.
No other details about the suspects were disclosed.
The bureau named the victims as spouses Lai Yen Hung and Yin Hanbing, Hsu Hsin-Chung and Jiang Nan, but gave no further details.
Local law-enforcers have previously warned that foreign criminals were targeting their compatriots in the country for kidnapping and extortion.