Rio Crime Blotter: Fallacious Fed Has Fled!

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In Rio, the problem was never the Red Command, but the “Blue Command,” the military police. The problem is police corruption. There is this impression that crime is high in Brazil. It’s not. Police corruption is high. Criminality flows from the corruption of the police. When the police stop being corrupt, crime goes down. When kids [interviewed in Falcão: Children of the Traffic] say they pay part of the cop’s salary, that’s true. The traffic, in reality, is a partner of the Brazilian police. –Hélio Luz, former chief of the Rio state judicial police, to the Zero Hora newspaper, May 2007. See Top Rio Cops: “Their Priority Was to Protect The Mafia”

Acusado de assaltar com colete da PF foge no Rio: Suspect in kidnapping attempt by men impersonating federal officers escapes from prison.

On the case, see

The Brazilian press is full of phony “scoops” and “scandals,” but in that case the Estado de S. Paulo produced the real McCoy: It photographed four men, posing as federal agents, trying to wrestle the owner of a currency exchange house into a car, saying they were arresting him on money-laundering charges.

O secretário estadual de Segurança Pública, José Mariano Beltrame, determinou nesta sexta-feira (28) ao delegado titular da Polinter, Herald Espíndola, que tome depoimento dos policiais que estavam de plantão na noite de quinta-feira (27) na carceragem do Ponto Zero, em Campo Grande, de onde o delegado aposentado Paulo Sérgio Cardoso Figueiredo, de 57 anos, fugiu na quinta.

On Friday, state public security secretary Beltrame ordered Polinter commander Herald Espíndola to take statements from policemen who were on duty on Thursday, September 27, at the Ponto Zero jail in Campo Grande, from which retired federal police officer Paulo Sérgio Cardoso Figueiredo, 57, escaped on Thursday.

Paulo Sérgio é acusado de participação na tentativa de assalto a um empresário na Barra da Tijuca, Zona Oeste do Rio, usando coletes da Polícia Federal, fugiu da carceragem do Ponto Zero, em Campo Grande.

Paulo Sérgio, [who] is accused of participating in the attempted robbery of a business owner in the Barra da Tijuca neighborhood in the Western Zone of Rio, wearing vests identifying the suspects as federal police agents, escaped from the Ponto Zero jail in Campo Grande.

Segundo a Polícia Civil, Paulo Sérgio seria o responsável pelos uniformes e pela sirene da polícia usada no carro. Os outros dois acusados são bombeiros e foram presos pela polícia no dia 16 de agosto.

According to state civilian police, Paulo Sérgio was responsible for providing the uniforms and police siren used by the robbers. The other two men accused are [Rio state] firemen and were arrested on August 16.

On notorious crooks who somehow manage to tunnel their way out of Brazilian Stalag 17s, see also

The story is from the G1 (Globo) news portal, and has that handy little “context” box that links you straight through to previous coverage on the incident.

For example, there is this follow-up on one of the suspects in the case:

O bombeiro Tito Lívio de Paiva Franco não só se vestia de policial federal para realizar assaltos como também traficava drogas, segundo o delegado André Drumond, que pediu a prisão preventiva de Tito nesta sexta-feira (17).

Fireman Tito Lívio de Paiva Franco did not just dress up as a federal agent to carry off robberies. He also trafficked drugs, according to police delegado Drumond, who applied for preventive custody of the man on September 17.

Drumond is also working the 15th BPM case in Duque de Caxias, I notice.

O delegado contou que policiais da 59ªDP (Duque de Caxias) descobriram o envolvimento do bombeiro com o tráfico durante a operação Caxias Segura, que investiga criminosos nas favelas do Lixão e Vila Ideal, em Caxias.

Drumond said that policement of the 59th Precinct in Duque de Caxias uncovered his involvment with the drug trade during Operations Safe Caxias, investigating criminals in the Lixão and Vila Ideal shantytowns in [the downstate city.]

Segundo a polícia, Daiana Gomes de Oliveira, de 19 anos, e Maura Lelis Martins, de 23 anos, presas com maconha e cocaína no dia 8 de janeiro deste ano, na estação de trem de Bonsucesso, no subúrbio do Rio, confessaram que transportavam a droga para o bombeiro em depoimento prestado à 59ªDP na madrugada desta sexta (17). Na época da prisão, no entanto, elas teriam dito que a droga estava sendo levada para um traficante conhecido como Nem, que seria o codinome do bombeiro Tito, segundo o delegado.

According to police, Daiana Gomes de Oliveira, 19, e Maura Lelis Martins, 23, who were arrested with cocaine and marijuana on January 8 of this year in the train station at Bomsucesso in the Rio suburbs, confessed, in statements to the 59th DP on September 7, that they were transporting the drugs to the fireman. At the time of their arrest, however, they reported said the drugs were being taken to a trafficker named Nem [“not even”] — which may be Tito’s code name, the police official said.

Fire captain Nemo.

In other words, G1 has a world-class information architecture and is pretty Jakob Nielsen-easy to navigate.

And if the reporting is bylined to “the G1 newsroom,” I find, it is much more likely to provide you with quality straight reporting, arranged and selected according to a coherent set of priorities. (The same tends to be true of the reportagem local at the Folha de S. Paulo, I tend to think, and some of their regional bureaus, too.)

G1 — I turn regularly to the “latest news” scroll, along with comparable pages on the Estadão (which needs serious help on its Web site design, however) and Último Segundo (which just published an excellent editorial guide for publishing news on the Web), and to a lesser degree, Terra — is Globo’s hope for the future.

I hope they realize that.

Fire Ali Kamel.

Put one of the people responsible for this project in his job, running Globo Journalism Central.

Rewarding competence and professionalism, while borking gabbling incompetence — and intentional acts of intellectual dishonesty for the purposes of disinforming — is not a vast Communist plot.

It’s as pro-free market as Adam freaking Smith.

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