FBI offers $20,000 reward month after U.S. woman kidnapped in Mexico: "We're not gonna give up on my mom"
More than a month after an American woman was kidnapped from her home in Mexico, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said it is offering a $20,000 reward for information that leads to her "physical location."
In a news release issued Thursday, the FBI said they believe that 63-year-old Maria del Carmen Lopez, was taken from her Pueblo Nuevo, Colima home on Feb. 9.
CBS Los Angeles reports that Lopez is a mother of seven, with many of her children still living in Southern California. She often makes trips to visit the family spread throughout the Southland.
"We're doing everything we can still. We're not gonna give up on my mom," said one of Maria's sons, Tony. "We're gonna find her, one way or another."
Her children are now pleading for her safe return after this terrifying event which they believed to be entirely unprovoked.
"There was never any sort of threats, there was never any enemies," Maria's daughter Zonia told CBS Los Angeles. "Anything that would indicate that she was in any kind of trouble."
A family member only identified as a cousin of Lopez's children reported that they saw a group of as many as five people at her home at the time of her disappearance.
"Someone did see. There was a car that drove into the property. There was an exchange of words, they did hear her say she would not get into the car," Zonia said. "Two individuals picked her up and another one came out of the van. They had their heads covered and they covered her mouth and that's when they took her."
Her children believe she was targeted in a crime of opportunity, and that she had no connection to any gangs or criminal activity of any sort.
"I don't think it was isolated, to end up at a town that's so remote, from the city, you'd really have to kind of be indicated — go there," Zonia said.
No arrests have been made in connection to the alleged abduction.
"The FBI is conducting this investigation jointly with law enforcement authorities in Mexico," said the FBI's Laura Eimiller in a statement.
Investigators have described Lopez as standing around 5 feet, 2 inches tall and weighing around 160 pounds. She has blonde hair, brown eyes and "permanent/tattooed" eyeliner, the statement said.
Anyone who has any information on Lopez's whereabouts or information to provide investigators is urged to contact their closest FBI office or the nearest American Embassy or Consulate. The Los Angeles branch of the FBI can be reached at (310) 477-6565.
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