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A man from Utah turned down a $100,000 offer to travel to Congo for a ‘security job’ that turned out to be a covert attempt to overthrow the government

Daniel Gonzalez (Calvin Gates/Shutterstock)

A friend of the son of a well-known opposition leader in Congo said he refused a large offer to go there from the U.S. to work as part of the family’s security team. This offer turned out to be part of a failed attempt to overthrow the government.

Marcel Malanga, the 21-year-old son of coup leader Christian Malanga, was captured by Congolese forces after his father was killed in a shootout during his arrest. Marcel’s former high school classmate from West Jordan, Utah, Tyler Thompson, 21, was also arrested, along with another American, following an unsuccessful attack on the presidential palace in Kinshasa.

According to Daniel Gonzalez, a former teammate of the two Utah residents involved in the failed coup, Marcel had proposed paying him between $50,000 to $100,000 to spend four months in Congo as a security guard for his father, a politician.

Christian Malanga (Calvin Gates/Shutterstock)

Gonzalez, a 22-year-old FedEx worker, seriously considered the offer but decided against it so he could spend the summer with his girlfriend, feeling fortunate not to be caught up in the dangerous situation.

Marcel’s offer to Gonzalez shows how he may have convinced Tyler Thompson to join him on what Thompson’s stepmother described as supposed to be a vacation. Marcel reportedly approached former football teammates with various offers, including describing the trip as a family holiday or a service project to help communities affected by drought.

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