Bicho Solto: “Gambling Mob Defendants Let Loose Again”

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Vintage roleta with bichos. Source: Musem of the Policia Civil, Rio de Janeiro

Chefe da polícia
pelo telefone
mandou avisar
Que na Carioca
havia uma roleta
para se jogar …

STF manda soltar 15 envolvidos na Operação Furacão: Supreme Court orders release of 15 arrested in Operation Hurricane. Globo’s G1 news portal reports.

The federal police made a point of giving the antimafia operation an English name — Hurricane — but the local press has found this confusing, so the G1 news portal prefers the Portuguese furacão.

G1 shares the Globo.com domain with LIESA, Rio’s League of Independent Carnival Societies.

It might have een more accurate to report that a Supreme Court justice — Justice Mello (as in Collor de Mello), who also presides over the federal elections tribunal — ordered the release. See, for example,

A working group — how does one translate a judicial turma, I keep wondering — overturned some of Mello’s previous orders to release suspects in the case from preventive custody, and some legal observers expect they will do so in the case of the other suspects.

These people are accused of buying cops and judges in order to keep gambling establishments operating.

Or being the cops and judges bought. Senior cops. Jurisprudential eminences.

At the heart of the case:

A sidebar to the story is the charge that the same gambling mobs fixed the results of the Rio Carnaval competition this year, through their control of LIESA, the league of independent carnival societies — think of it as the NFL of competitive booty-shaking.

Which has an exclusive contract with TV Globo, a condition which Rio city councilmembers say is precluded by the contract between LIESA and the city, however. So yes, hmmm, the city goverment of Rio and TV Globo do sort of seem to be mixed up in a cozy little public-private partnership with the mafia.

See also

Globo’s Mexican congener, Televisa, has a license to operate bingo parlors, of course — they call them yaks — and is working to incorporate gambling into its interactive TV service.

Which would make it sort of a giant electronic bicheiro with 75% market share. See also

Is that what Globo wants to be when it grows up?

The ebb and flow of habeas corpus applications in this case is really interesting to watch.

O ministro do Supremo Tribunal Federal (STF) Marco Aurélio Mello concedeu habeas corpus nesta segunda-feira (17) a 15 denunciados na Operação Furacão. Iniciada em dezembro de 2005, a operação levantou indícios de que os acusados teriam envolvimento em esquema de corrupção em inquéritos contra casas de bingo e jogos ilícitos. Eles também são suspeitos de fornecer informações privilegiadas sobre operações de repressão aos jogos.

Supreme Court justice Mello conceded habeas corpus on Monday to 15 defendants in Operation Hurricane. Initiated in December 2005 [sic], the operation found indications that the accused were involved in corrupting legal cases against bingo halls and illegal gambling. They are also suspected for leaking confidential information on law enforcement actions against gambling.

Hurricane hit the headlines in December 2006.

Entre os beneficiados com a decisão estão os empresários Licínio Bastos e Laurentino dos Santos, o presidente da Liga Independente das Escolas de Samba do Rio de Janeiro (LIESA), Ailton Guimarães Jorge, conhecido como capitão Guimarães, e o sobrinho dele, Júlio Guimarães. O ministro ressaltou que eles só serão soltos se não tiverem nenhum outro decreto de prisão.

Among those benefiting fro the ruling are businesmen Licínio Bastos and Laurentino dos Santos, the president of LIESA, “Captain” Guimarães, and his nephew, Júlio Guimarães. The justice emphasized that they will not be released if they face other detention orders.


Guimarães (l.) with Rio mayor Cesar Maia (second from left) and the LIESA president. The city goverment of Rio and TV Globo seem to have a cozy little public-private partnership with the freaking mafia. Doesn’t it?

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