LAHORE The police have begun intensive investigations to trace the whereabouts of the 60-year-old American national abducted by a group of gunmen from his house here in Model Town area in the wee hours of Saturday. Well-informed police sources revealed that the motives behind the abduction of US national, identified as Warren Weinstein, Country Director for a US-based aid organisation, might be ransom as the man has been kidnapped in a well-planned manner. It took just 13 minutes to the gunmen to barge into the house, kidnap the foreigner and flee from the scene, leaving the security agencies to launch massive hunt and search for their footprints. Another senior officer also disclosed to this reporter that the investigators were probing whether the American had links with a few militant groups, actively operating in the troubled Northwest Pakistan, as he used to frequently visit the terror-hit region. Some close friends of Warren Weinstein told the police investigators that he often used to wear Shalwar Kameez, a Pakistani national dress, to penetrate among the ordinary people. He was also fluent in speaking Urdu language. The police have registered a kidnapping case against unidentified abductors and are investigating with no solid clue in hands. The incidents of kidnapping for ransom are common here in the City and well-to-do people and businessmen are often targeted by militant groups and gangsters. Police sources said at least 10 to 12 armed men riding on three different cars stormed into the residence (49-J-Block) of Weinstein located in the posh locality of Model Town before dawn on Saturday. The gunmen kidnapped him and took him along with them on a car without facing any resistance from the guards deployed there for his security. The police have taken all the four security guards and other house servants into custody. They are being questioned in connection with the incident, a police investigator said, but declined to give any further details. Mr Weinstein has been in Pakistan for at least five years and has been working for the JE Austin firm on development in tribal areas. He was scheduled to return to the US on Monday (15 August). A police officer, requesting his name not be mentioned, said the kidnappers forced the driver of Mr Weinstein to open the door. As he opened the door, they forced their entry into the house, pushed him down and held him up at gunpoint, the officer explained. He said that four of the gunmen stormed into the house through the main gate while seven to eight others entered the house by scaling the boundary wall. The attackers held up one of the security guards, took him to the room where Weinstein was sleeping. One of the house servants, under duress, knocked the door, and asked Weinstein to open the door by identifying himself, sources close to the investigators said. As he opened the door, the gunmen barged into the room and held him hostage. Later, one of the kidnappers contacted his accomplice by phone and asked him to park the car right outside the gate. The gunmen took the man to the car and fled away from the scene within a few minutes, sources maintained. A security guard told the police investigators that one of the gunmen dodged him as he introduced himself as the next-door-neighbour and asked him to open the door by offering for Sehri (fasting) in the wee hours of Saturday. Police sources said that distribution of food during Iftaar and Sehr is common among the neighbours in the posh residential area. An official at the US Consulate in Lahore confirmed the kidnapping saying they were in touch the police and the government in this regard. Weinstein used to live mainly in Islamabad but traveled to Lahore a day before his abduction. According to the JE Austin Associates website, the man was an expert in international development with more than 25 years experience while the firm often works with the US Agency for International Development (USAID). No group has yet asserted the responsibility for the abduction. Further investigations are underway.