Nine indicted on federal charges involving kidnapping of N.C. prosecutor's father

Prosecutors say kidnappers recruited by North Carolina inmate abducted the wrong person, left McDonald's receipt at his house.
By Frances Burns  |  April 23, 2014 at 10:12 AM
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RALEIGH, N.C., April 23 (UPI) -- An inmate serving a life sentence in North Carolina and eight others have been indicted on federal charges connected to the kidnapping of a prosecutor's father.

Court documents released Tuesday suggested that the plot was carried out incompetently. The indictment charges that Kelvin Melton, 49, recruited two women to carry out his plan to abduct Colleen Janssen, an assistant district attorney in North Carolina's Wake County, and a public defender, and that they in turn recruited others.

The group went to the wrong house and kidnapped Janssen's father on April 5. The FBI freed him a few days later in Atlanta.

Investigators also found a receipt at Frank Janssen's home from a McDonald's in Lexington, S.C., that led them to two of the suspects.

Prosecutors said that in March the group searched for Colleen Janssen in Louisiana, after finding what they believed was an address for her.

Melton was sentenced to life in prison as a habitual criminal after he was convicted in 2012 of assault with intent to kill. Prosecutors describe him as a leader in the Bloods gang.

Investigators say he used a smuggled cellphone to organize the plot, offering the others in the group $10,000 each.

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