'Terrifying ordeal': Two more men arrested in Quebec and New York in elderly couple's kidnapping
MONTREAL -- A sixth and seventh man have been arrested in connection with the dramatic kidnapping of a couple in their 70s from New York, who were found in Quebec.
According to a report from the U.S. Attorney's Office from the Northern District of New York, the suspects forcibly entered the victims’ home in Franklin County, N.Y. and kidnapped them. The elderly couple was driven to Tsi Snaihne (Snye), Quebec, in the Mohawk Nation at Akwesasne, which straddles the American border.
There, they were put in a boat, taken to mainland Canada, and then transported to the Eastern Townships where they were held for several days as co-conspirators made ransom demands to one of the victims' children, the report reads.
Quebec provincial police (SQ) said in a news release that a 52-year-old man was arrested while driving his car Thursday just after 11 p.m. by the SQ's tactical intervention group in Hichinbrooke, Quebec near the U.S. border.
The FBI arrested Graigory Brown,50, of Plattsburgh Thursday on the same file.
Both men appeared in court Friday. Brown was detained until his hearing Oct. 6.
"According to the complaint, Brown and his co-conspirators put an elderly couple through a terrifying ordeal," said acting United States attorney Antoinette T. Bacon. "I would like to thank our law enforcement partners, including the FBI, New York State Police, Surete du Quebec, and Akwesasne Mohawk Police, for bringing them home safely. We will continue to work together on both sides of the border to secure justice in this case and hold accountable all those involved in this horrific crime.”
Five other suspects aged 36 to 75 were arrested last week in connection to the kidnapping of Moira, New York residents James Helm Sr. and Sandra Helm, who disappeared Sept. 27. The couple was found safe in Magog, in Quebec's Eastern Townships region.
According to sources close to the case in the US, the victims' grandson Macenzie Helm and his mother Michelle Helm were allegedly involved in a cocaine deal Sept. 21 that was stopped by Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) agents in South Burlington, Vermont before the alleged kidnapping. Drugs and cash were seized during the arrest.
The SQ worked alongside the FBI and New York State Police in the U.S. and the RCMP, and Akwesasne Mohawk Police to apprehend the suspects.
The FBI confirmed it CTV News it has one person in custody in connection with the international kidnapping and that the investigation continues.