São Paulo: “New Top Cop is Veteran of DOPS, Miami SWAT”

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DOPS São Paulo is now a museum.

The legal news and information service Consultor Jurídico — there seems to be healthy competition in this area, and the competing services are all pretty darn good — reports: New São Paulo police chief is a former DOPS inspector.

DOPS was the notorious political police, in whose dungeons over by the Estação da Luz people tended to commit astonishing suicides worthy of Chinese circus acrobats. Or more often simply disappear, with phony cover stories provided by the Folha de S. Paulo‘s afternoon tabloid.

Senator Tuma of São Paulo is also a former DOPS official, although his Wikipedia autohagiography by proxy somehow omits to mention the fact.

O novo delegado-geral da Polícia Civil de São Paulo é Maurício José Lemos Freire. Ele assume a vaga deixada, nesta segunda-feira (10/9), por Mário Jordão Toledo Leme, que pediu demissão.

The new chief of the state judicial police in São Paulo is Maurício José Lemos Freire. He takes over the post vacated on September 10 by Mário Jordão Toledo Leme, who resigned.

Os motivos da demissão não são conhecidos. Jordão afirma que deixou o cargo por motivos pessoais. No entanto, há informações de que ele teria se desentendido com o secretário de Segurança Pública, Ronaldo Marzagão.

The reasons for the resignation are unknown. Jordão says he left his post for personal reasons. However, there is information that he had a falling out with the state secretary of public safety, Ronaldo Marzagão.

A Agência Estado informa que o governador paulista, José Serra, estaria descontente com o desempenho da Segurança Pública do Estado, principalmente por causa das repetidas denúncias de corrupção envolvendo policiais civis.

The Estado news agency reports that the state governor, José Serra, is unhappy with his public safety department, principally because of repeated charges of police corruption.

My impression was that Serra was lobbied heavily to keep the public safety team of his predecessor, but resisted and named his own team. Soon after, crooked cop busts started happening. Which seems like a good thing. Serra is one of the notable chorus of governors singing from the hymnal of “we are going to bork corruption no matter who gets hurt.” You hardly ever read about it in the papers, but there really does seem to be a nonpartisan consensus that this is the sort of thing that politicians are going to say. I believe I remember hearing Neves of Minas Gerais saying something similar recently, for example: “I am not going to politicize this issue.”

In São Paulo, a mob lawyer was arrested recently in possession of a spreadsheet indicating payoffs to something like 85% to 90% of São Paulo police precincts. By gambling mafiosos.

The deputy mayor of the Butantã subprefecture is also suspected of taking bribes to keep bingos and slot machines operating on his turf. There are rumblings about Matarazzo of the Sé subprefecture as well. Yes, one of those Matarazzos.

DENARC officers reportedly extorted the Colombian drug lord, “Chupeta,” to the tune of a million bucks, rather than busting him.

See also

Unsolved death squad-style killings tend to bother me as well.

I often wonder what Governor Serra is thinking and doing. He has some interesting and pretty bold policy initiatives. Such as a massive audit of public contracting in the last decade.

But you hardly read anything about him in the papers. It’s as though Governor Schwarzenegger of California suddenly assumed the media profile of Howard Hughes in his declining years.

His political adversaries claim he and his party exercise iron message control over a complicit press, but I often wonder whether this is not rather an artifact of “Toucan-on-Toucan violence” (the big-billed bird is the mascot of the PSDB political party, which is approaching what promises to be an hysterically contentious national convention).

Durante os nove meses em que ocupou a função, Jordão trouxe para a Polícia Civil alguns métodos de atuação semelhantes aos da Polícia Federal. Foi ele que planejou duas das maiores operações da história da polícia paulista, em que mais de duas mil pessoas foram presas em um só dia, em cada uma das ações.

In his nine months on the job, Jordão brought methods to the state police similar to those used by Federal Police.

Except that the Federal Police have this knack of arresting people without killing anybody.

They tend to pile 100 guys, armed to the teeth, on top of one poor bastard of a drug lord or gambling racketeer, whom they roust out of bed at his gated condo at three in the morning.

The São Paulo state police have yet to acquire the knack, it seems to me. See

He planned two of the largest raids in the history of the São Paulo police, in which more than 2,000 persons were arrested on a single day in each of the operations.

And almost everyone was out of jail almost immediately, one reads.

Cynics suggested this was a Casablanca-style rounding up of the usual suspects. Show of efficiency to push the nasty corruption headlines down the page. Interesting theory. Let’s keep our eyes peeled for new information on that point.

Maurício José Lemos Freire começou a trabalhar em 1977 e atuou como investigador do Dops (antigo Departamento de Ordem Política e Social), de acordo com a Folha Online. Ex-diretor da Academia da Polícia Civil, Freire está atualmente à frente do Dird (Departamento de Identificação e Registros Diversos). A secretaria ainda não informou se ele acumulará os dois cargos.

Lemos Freire started his career in 1977 and worked as an investigator for the old Department of Political and Social Order (DOPS), according to the Folha Online. A former director of the police academy, Freire currently heads DIRD, the Department of Identification and Miscellaneous Cases [?]. The state secretary has not yet said whether he will occupy both posts at once.

Também já atuou em distritos policiais na cidade de São Paulo, na Divisão de Roubo a Bancos e foi diretor do Deinter-7 (Departamento de Polícia Judiciária do Interior), em Sorocaba.

He has also worked in police districts in the city of São Paulo, in the Bank Robbery division, and directed DEINTER-7 (the “upstate” judicial police department) in Sorocaba.

O novo delegado-geral de São Paulo é o único não-americano credenciado como instrutor da Swat do Departamento de Polícia de Miami (EUA).

The new chief of police is the only non-American credentialed as a SWAT instructor by the Miami Police Department.

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