WASHINGTON (WGNO) — On Saturday,  U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy announced the release of a group of American hostages from Venezuelan captivity. According to reports one of the hostages who was freed was a man from Lake Charles.

Tomeu Vadell was a member of a group of CITGO energy executives, known as the CITGO 6, that were lured to Caracas and taken hostage by the Nicholas Maduro Regime in November of 2017. “After five years of work to free Tomeu Vadell and the rest of the Citgo 6, it is a blessing to say they are returning home,” said Dr. Cassidy.

Along with Vadell, Jose Luis Zambrano, Alirio Zambrano, Jorge Toledo, Jose Pereira, and former U.S. Marin Corporal Matthew Heath were released by the Maduro Regime as part of a swap for convicted drug traffickers Franqui Flores and Efrain Campo, nephews of Nicholas Maduro’s wife Cilia Flores.

Vadell’s family says that they are grateful. They released a statement about the news:

“Tomeu is coming home! We are grateful for Senator Cassidy’s support all these years and for President Biden prioritizing bringing Americans home!”

Cassidy added, “Thank you to the administration and the many U.S. officials who worked with us to secure their release. This is a great day.” According to a press release, Cassidy had been actively involved in the effort to free Vadell, since the group’s arrest. Officials say that he was in regular contact with the Vadell family, the U.S. State Department, and other intermediaries working on a way to bring them home.