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Abducted Going to Gym, Billionaire Turns Up Near Tennis Court

Mohammed Dewji is now safe at home in Tanzania after 9-day ordeal
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 20, 2018 7:00 AM CDT
Mohammed Dewji.   (Wikimedia/Gonzalezbarbara)

(Newser) – Africa's youngest billionaire is back home. Mohammed Dewji, who was seized Oct. 11 by masked gunmen while headed to the gym in the Tanzanian city of Dar es Salaam, has been released, the BBC reports. "I have returned home safely," his company, MeTL Group, quoted the 43-year-old father of three as saying in a Friday night tweet. "I thank the authorities of Tanzania, including the Police Force for working for my safe return." CNN reports he was found early Saturday morning near a Dar es Salaam tennis court, and he appeared at a presser with police, dressed in pants and a white tee. January Makamba, the country's environment minister, says he visited Dewji at his home after his return and that Dewji seemed relatively unharmed, save for marks on his hands and legs where he'd been bound.

"I have just spoken to him and his father 20 minutes ago," Makamba tweeted. "In his voice, he's the usual Mo. So he is okay." Dar es Salaam's police chief tells IOL that Dewji told police his kidnappers "treated him very well and gave him food." His office reportedly told Forbes Africa he believed his abductors were from South Africa. It's not clear how he was let go, or whether a ransom was paid, though a source said to be close to Dewji tells Forbes Africa his abductors let him go after getting spooked by all the media hype. (Dewji has promised to donate half of his fortune to charity.)

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