KIDNAPPED For 26 YEARS By Neighbor!

A man who has been missing for 26 years—after being kidnapped at age 19—has been found only a short walk from his family’s home in Algeria. Despite his proximity to his home and his family, which he missed desperately, the man—whose name is Omar bin Omran—says that he never cried out or attempted escape because he believed his captor had placed him under a magic spell, which restrained him.

Omar vanished during the Algerian civil war of 1998, which lasted over a decade. Because he disappeared during the war, his family assumed that he had been killed in the chaos of the conflict between Islamist rebel groups and government forces in the North African nation.

The entire time, though, he was alive. The now-45 year-old man was found on May 12 amidst the haystacks in a stable that stood in the city of Djelfa, only 200 yards away from his family home.

Omran was found after his captor’s brother, angered by an inheritance dispute, complained on the Internet. The social media postings let slip the name of the kidnapping victim, and the location where he was being kept. Omran’s family saw the posts and stormed their neighbor’s residence.

Footage of the moment of rescue, where Omran was found a in the home of his alleged captor, in a hole that authorities said was a sheep pen, was broadcast on Algerian television and posted to social media. The video shows flashlights shining down into the pit, and a dazed Omar, surrounded by hay and with straw in his hair, appears to look up in shock at the sight of the search party.

The alleged kidnapper was arrested after he attempted to flee, according to a statement by the Algerian Ministry of Justice. The suspect is a 61 year-old doorman who works in El Guedid, a nearby town The statement said that the victim is receiving psychological and medical treatment.

The investigation into the crime, which the ministry calls “heinous,” is still ongoing.