The daughter of a bank branch employee was kidnapped on her way to school in the Eastern Townships on Wednesday, but managed to escape later in the day.

The Sureté du Quebec said the 12-year-old girl was deliberately targeted because the kidnappers wanted to be paid a ransom for her release.

The kidnappers grabbed the girl in the morning and when she never showed up to school, authorities were notified and began searching.

The girl was being held in a vacant house on Fougeres Rd. that was listed as being for sale, and managed to escape several hours later when the kidnappers left her alone.

She was found by officers in the middle of the afternoon.

Police said the kidnappers were demanding a ransom for the girl's release, and that the girl had been taken specifically because her parent has a high-ranking position at a bank branch.

The girl was not physically hurt during her ordeal, and told police she did not know the men who took her.

Two suspects

Police said the girl was taken by two men, one of whom spoke English and the other spoke French.

They were driving a pale-coloured Ford Econoline van that was spotted on Fougeres Rd., Maple St., and Academy St. in Sutton.

On Friday the Sureté du Quebec confirmed they had located a light-coloured Dodge Caravan minivan that was spotted on surveillance video near the kidnapping, but would not disclose where the vehicle was found.

Potential witness in Brome Lake

Officers are also looking for someone they believe witnessed the kidnapping.

They said the witness was in a Tim Hortons restaurant on Knowlton Rd. in Brome Lake around 9 a.m. Wednesday.

As seen in the photo accompanying this article, he was wearing a black baseball cap, and a black sweatshirt over a white shirt, with white shoes.

Anyone with information is asked to call 9-1-1 or to call the SQ at 1-800-659-4264.