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Footage Captures The Moment Man Missing For 26 Years Was Found In Neighbors Cellar Just Minutes From His Home

The man could see his loved ones from the window of the cellar.

Omar Bin Omran

Startling footage shows the moment authorities discovered the hiding place for a man who was allegedly kidnapped when he was just a teenager in 1998.

On his way to vocational school in Algeria, Omar Bin Omran, then 17 years old, disappeared. It wasn't until Sunday, May 12, that police were able to track him down.

Since then, footage of Omran's finding has been aired on Algerian television networks and shared on X.

In the video, Omran—who has grown facial hair—is seen peering up into the torchlight from what looks to be a hay-surrounded pit in the ground. Later, as officials carry out their investigation, scenes feature flashing lights.



 

Omran, who is 45 years old, was discovered in what appears to be a sheep enclosure beneath the floor.

Omran was discovered about 300 feet from his own family's home, which added to the discovery's astonishing nature—as if being held hostage for 26 years wasn't stunning enough.

The 61-year-old man suspected of holding him captive made an attempt to escape after his discovery, but he was apprehended and placed under detention in custody.

Omran's family thought he was dead or kidnapped when he vanished in 1998 during the Algerian Civil War.

On the other hand, his mother is reported to have maintained hope until her passing in 2013.

Following a dispute over inheritance, the brother of Omran's alleged captor—who was reportedly employed as a public servant—suggested on social media that he might have been involved in the kidnapping, prompting investigators to reopen the investigation.

After searching the man's house, the Algerian National Gendarmerie found the trapdoor concealed behind the hay.

Gendarmerie was instructed to launch an extensive investigation and officers proceeded to the property in question by the General Prosecutor of the Court of Idrisiya in the province of Djelfa following this complaint.

“The Public Prosecutor's Office ordered that the victim receive medical and psychological treatment, and the suspect will be presented to the Public Prosecutor's Office immediately after the completion of the investigation."

Omran was brought to a hospital when he was found so he could receive both medical and psychological care.

According to a report from the Elkhabar newspaper, Omran was quoted as saying that he used to be able to see his family members from a window in the cellar where he was being held, but he couldn't call out as it felt 'as if there was a compelling force inside me, preventing me'.

Omran’s alleged kidnapper is scheduled to face trial for what the attorney general’s office called a 'heinous act'.