Two teenagers kidnapped in March were found dead in a rural area of the southwestern Colombian province of Nariño, police said Thursday.

The bodies were discovered outside the town of Mallama, the provincial police commander, Col. Hugo Diaz, told Efe by telephone.

He identified the victims as Robert Solis Mena, 17, and Dario Javier Benavides Hernandez, 18, and said they were killed even though their families paid a ransom of 12 million pesos ($6,500).

"They (the captors) killed them because they didn't want to be recognized," the colonel said.

One of the alleged kidnappers is in custody and three other suspects are being sought in connection with the case, including a Colombian citizen now serving time in a prison in neighboring Ecuador.

Diaz said that kidnappings for ransom are fairly uncommon in Nariño, a Pacific coast province crawling with leftist rebels and former right-wing militiamen turned drug traffickers. EFE