American Travel Writer Kidnapped in Somalia
Michael Scott Moore was considering writing a book about Somali pirates
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Jan 27, 2012 12:48 PM CST
An AK-47 is seen in this stock photo.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Somali gunmen have kidnapped noted travel and surfing writer Michael Scott Moore, and are demanding an unknown ransom for his release. Moore, a Manhattan Beach native currently living in Berlin, holds both US and German citizenship. He was in Somalia because he was considering writing a book about Somali pirates, according to KTLA. He was taken Saturday, just days before a US raid freed two other Somali captives.

Though KTLA refers to his kidnappers as "pirates," Moore wasn't taken at sea; he was grabbed by 15 men in a pair of SUVs on his way to the airport. They've taken him to Ceel Huur, a village on the Indian Ocean that has hosted pirate captives in the past. The State Department says it is trying to negotiate Moore's release, but the Somalis, who believe Moore is a spy, won't budge until the ransom is paid.