The father and brother of Mexican film director Alejandro Gomez Monteverde, who is married to former Miss USA Ali Landry, were found dead after being held hostage for 16 days.

Juan Manuel Gomez Fernandez and Juan Manuel Gomez Monteverde were kidnapped in Tampico, a city in the northeastern Mexican state of Tamaulipas, and were found dead a few weeks later with critical head wounds, Central European News reported.

Despite a ransom being paid to bargain for the father and son’s survival, the pair were murdered in a region known for drug cartel violence between Los Zetas and the Gulf Cartel.

Monteverde, 38, is recognized for his films “Bella” and “Little Boy,” the former having taken first place at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2006. The director lives with Landry and their three children.

The director is also a good friend of Oscar winner Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, whose film “Birdman” took the Academy Awards for Best Director and Best Picture in 2015.

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This article originally appeared in the New York Post.