Bernie Ecclestone's mother-in-law has been reportedly kidnapped in Brazil

Aparecida Schunck is a native of Sao Paulo

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Picture by: Tony Marshall / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone's mother-in-law has reportedly been kidnapped in Brazil.

Aparecida Schunck was taken from her home in Interlagos, San Paolo, last Friday night, according to Brazilian news magazine Veja.

Her captors are demanding 120 million reals (€33.1m) in ransom - divided into four bags - for her return, the report says. The ransom demands are the highest in Brazilian history, Veja added.

The 67-year-old is the mother of Ecclestone's wife, Fabiana Flosi, whom the entrepreneur married in 2012  - three years after meeting her at the Brazilian Grand Prix. Their marriage followed Ecclestone's divorce from his then wife of 25 years, Croatian model Slavica Radic.

Ecclestone, 85, who is thought to be worth €2.7billion, is one of the most powerful men in sport.

As recently as a decade ago several people used to be seized each day in Brazil, often for sums of just a few hundred dollars. A crackdown by police and the creation of a special anti-kidnap division has significantly reduced the number of kidnappings in the country.

The news will come as further embarrassment to Brazil ahead of the Olympic Games which begin next month. On Monday it was reported that a New Zealand jiu-jitsu athlete was kidnapped by police in Rio de Janeiro.

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