Phone lines of Russian occupation administration in Melitopol is flooded with calls from the city residents complaining they are being demanded to pay a ransom for their detained or abducted relatives, said Ukraine’s security agency, the SBU, on Thursday.

The phone conversations picked up by the SBU show desperate women have to deal with squeezes amounting to $ 10-30 thousand.

In one call a woman is heard telling the officials: ‘You guys from the commandant’s office came, locked up my husband in the car trunk, and took him away. They gave no documents, nothing’.

Another person relates the similar story: ‘ [he] was tied up, put in a car trunk,  [they] picked up a vehicle, a mini tractor.. told us they were from police’.

One more lady is heard lamenting ‘My husband was taken away and they told he had been taken to Melitopol, to 58th Army, or thie 58th Army had taken him. What do I do?’

The ‘military administration’ officials fielding such calls suggest the relatives should come to the police station to sort out the ‘issue’, and this is where people are told an amount of ransom that will help such  families get back the missing relatives and  ‘go back to normal life’.