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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Purported chief of prison gang is slain at a beachfront restaurant in Rio de Janeiro

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RIO DE JANEIRO — The purported chief of an organized group was slain at a beachfront restaurant within the Brazilian metropolis of Rio de Janeiro, in response to a press release from police.

Sérgio Rodrigues da Costa Silva, 44, was fatally shot Sunday and located {dead} on the scene when Rio’s army police arrived and cordoned off the world to analyze, police stated.

Native media stories recognized Silva as head of an organized crime group often known as a militia, and stated his group had charged residents for defense and dealt in actual property and stolen autos.

The assassination was paying homage to the same incident at a beachside eatery a couple of months in the past, when gunmen killed three medical doctors and wounded a fourth in a gangland-style hit. It was broadly believed to be a case of mistaken id, with the hitmen believing one of many medical doctors to be a militia chief.

Militias in Brazil are distinct from drug trafficking gangs, which additionally management vital areas of Rio. The militias emerged within the Nineties once they initially had been made up primarily of former law enforcement officials, firefighters and troopers who needed to fight lawlessness of their neighborhoods. They charged residents for defense and different providers, and extra just lately moved into drug trafficking themselves, in addition to different prison actions.

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Greater than 10% of the 12 million residents in Rio’s metropolitan space dwell in areas managed by militias, in response to a 2022 research by the non-profit Fogo Cruzado and a security-focused analysis group on the Fluminense Federal College. They management one quarter of neighborhoods within the metropolis of Rio, amounting to greater than half its territory, the research discovered.

In December, certainly one of Rio’s high militia leaders surrendered after negotiations with native authorities. Luiz Antônio da Silva Braga, higher often known as Zinho, had 12 arrest warrants issued in opposition to him, federal police stated.

Gov. Castro known as Zinho “Rio’s primary enemy” and celebrated his police forces for the arrest.

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