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Brazil’s federal police arrest prime felony chief Zinho after negotiations

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RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazil’s federal police stated one of many nation’s prime felony leaders surrendered Sunday after negotiations with native authorities.

Luiz Antônio da Silva Braga, higher often called Zinho, is the highest chief of the most important militia group within the state of Rio de Janeiro. He had 12 arrest warrants issued in opposition to him, federal police stated.

“After the formalities as a result of his arrest, the inmate was taken for medical forensics after which despatched to the state’s jail system, the place he’ll stay out there for our courts,” federal police stated.

Militias emerged within the Nineties after they initially had been made up primarily of former cops, firefighters and troopers who wished to fight lawlessness of their neighborhoods. They charged residents for defense and different providers, and extra just lately moved into drug trafficking themselves.

Zinho’s group dominates Rio’s west area, the place a number of members of his gang had been killed lately. He had been on the run since 2018.

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Ricardo Cappelli, government secretary of the federal Justice Ministry, stated on social media that the federal police had carried out a number of investigations till it reached Zinho.

“That is work, work, work,” Capelli stated.

Zinho’s lawyer didn’t reply to a request for remark from The Related Press.

The militias are believed to regulate about 10% of Rio’s metropolitan space, in accordance with a research final 12 months by the non-profit Fogo Cruzado and a security-focused analysis group on the Fluminense Federal College. The militias are distinct from drug trafficking gangs that management essential areas of Rio.

The realm dominated by Zinho’s group made information in October when gang members set hearth to at the very least 35 buses in obvious retaliation for police killing considered one of their leaders. The assault occurred removed from Rio’s vacationer districts and prompted no casualties, however it underlined the power of the militias to trigger chaos and inflict harm.



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