Alagoas: The Ghost of Tenório Cavalcanti?

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Debut feature by Sergio Rezende (1986) told the story of a real-life favela populist famous for walking around extravagantly, as they say in Brooklyn and Chicago, strapped.

Primeira Edição (Alagoas, Brazil) reports that former governor Gomes de Barros (PTB) was arrested for having a machine gun at his home.

Xinhua (China) reports — erroneously — that the former governor was arrested “for money embezzlement.”

The Federal Police arrested on Thursday Antonio Albuquerque, former governor of Alagoas state, who was charged with participating in a scheme to embezzle 200 million reais (about 113 million U.S. dollars) from the state’s Legislative Assembly. […] The assembly’s President Manoel Gomes de Barros and former State Police Commander Jose Acirio Nascimento, along with 30 other suspects were also arrested in the operation,

The home of former governor Gomes de Barros was being searched as part of a “money embezzlement” investigation, but that is not why he was arrested. He was arrested on the weapons charge.

Antonio Albuquerque, the president of the legislative assembly — who was not arrested — is not the once and future governor of the state. Col. Nascimento is the former commandant of the state military police. There is another state police force, the state judicial police (Policia Civil). They are on strike.

On Xinhua, see also

Life imitates art imitating life in fictional form, while the art of imitating life (nonfictionally) reports imaginary facts?

I immediately think of O Homen da Capa Preta (1986), a wildly stylish biopic — I think Rezende would admit some influence from Bonnie and Clyde if you pressed him — about Tenório Cavalcanti, shantytown populist of the Lacerdist UDN.

(Lacerda — parlayed newspaper ownership into the governorship of the national capital — is undergoing something of a revisionist historical revival here at the moment, but one recalls — I need to find the cite for this — that in the run-up to the 1964, Lacerda reportedly smuggled and cached military-grade weapons illegally, and hired 5,000 new military police from the shantytowns without any of the, shall we say, usual screening procedures or reference-checking for law-enforcement personnel.)

The question to be determined is whether the machine gun belonged to the state military police, one reads here. The former governor has not held public office for some eight years, I think I read.

In other news today, my wife shouts out: The “dental floss” bikini is back in style this summer! God help us all. Because there is always someone on the beach wearing one who should not be, on aesthetic grounds. (I include myself, of course. Remember Homer Simpson strolling the Copacabana calçadão? C’est moi.)

I am continuing to monitor coverage of this political corruption scandal in the sex Senator’s home state because, well, it is just plain interesting to me.

A Polícia Federal divulgou, na noite desta quinta-feira, um balanço das atividades da Operação Taturana. A ação policial, desencadeada nesta manhã de quinta-feira, resultou na prisão de 40 pessoas envolvidas com fraudes na Assembléia Legislativa do Estado de Alagoas. Do total de prisões, 38 foram motivadas por mandados de prisão e duas foram prisões em flagrante por posse ilegal de arma.

On Thursday evening, the Federal Police published an after-action report on Operation Taturana … [which] resulted in the arrest of 40 persons involved in fraud at the State Legislative Assembly of Alagoas. Of those, 38 arrests came as the result of arrest warrants and two were in flagrante arrests for illegal possession of a firearm.

Na noite desta quinta-feira, o Tribunal de Justiça concedeu um Habeas Corpus libertou o ex-governador Manoel Gomes de Barros, preso por conta de uma metradalhadora encontrada em sua casa. A PF investiga se ela seria de propriedade de Polícia Militar.

This evening (Thursday), the state supreme court granted a habeas corpus petition by former governor Manoel Gomes de Barros, arrested because of a machine-gun found in his home. The federal police are looking into whether it might be the property of the state military police.

How law-enforcement and military-grade weapons get into the hands of people not authorized to have them (much less use them) is a sore point here in Brazil, I think you can fairly say.


Primera Edição today: No joy in Mudville. “Downtown Maceió gets double the number of police; OAB (bar association) calls for federal support; The Big Team gets demoted to the second division …”

Além das prisões, os policiais cumpriram mandados de busca que resultaram na apreensão de carros de luxo, jóias, dinheiro e armas. Também foram apreendidos documentos, agendas e computadores que podem comprovar a prática dos crimes investigados.

Besides the arrests, police served search warrants that resulted in the apprehension of luxury cars, jewelry, cash and guns. Also apprended were documents, datebooks, and computers that might serve as evidence of the crimes under investigation.

A Operação aconteceu em oito cidades: Palmeira dos Índios, Maceió, Minador do Negrão, Capela, Rio Largo, União dos Palmares, Limoeiro de Anadia e Marechal Deodoro.

The operation took place in eight cities: Palmeira dos Índios, Maceió, Minador do Negrão, Capela, Rio Largo, União dos Palmares, Limoeiro de Anadia and Marechal Deodoro.

Entre os presos estão: o ex-deputado e ex-presidente da ALE, Celso Luiz; o prefeito de Roteiro e ex-diretor da Casa Militar da ALE, Fábio Jatobá; uma mulher identificada como Daniela Moreira Silva Dórea, assessora do presidente da Assembléia, Antonio Albuquerque. Além deles, também está o ex-comandante da PM e atual diretor adjunto do Detran, Coronel Acírio.

Among those arrested are former deputy and former Assembly president, Celso Luiz; Roteiro mayor and former director of the Military Cabinet of the Assembly, Fábio Jatobá; [and] a woman identified as Daniela Moreira Silva Dórea, an aide to Assembly president Albuquerque. Besides them, the former commandant of the state military police and current joint director of DETRAN (the state transportation department), Colonel Acírio.

O deputado estadual Cícero Ferro também foi preso, mas por conta de armas irregulares encontradas com ele durante o cumprimento do mandado de busca e apreensão.

State lawmaker Cícero Ferro was also arrested, but because of irregular weapons found in his possession during the serving of the search warrant.

ESQUEMA – A quadrilha se apropriava de recursos da Casa Legislativa, por meio de sua folha de pagamentos, com a inclusão de funcionários fantasmas e laranjas. Em outra modalidade de fraude, os envolvidos declaravam à Receita Federal retenções de Imposto de Renda em valores superiores aos efetivamente retidos. Dessa forma, os criminosos ainda se beneficiavam das restituições de imposto de renda promovidas pela Receita Federal aos falsos funcionários.

The scheme: The gang misappropriated funds from the Assembly using its payroll, into which ghost employees and fronts were inserted. …

And from here on it it just plagiarizes the official press release.

Speaking of which, a couple of other police blotter items from the Tupi feds today:

A Polícia Federal deflagrou na manhã desta sexta-feira, 07, a Operação Repique. O objetivo da ação é desarticular uma organização criminosa de estelionatários e fraudadores, que também praticava extorsão contra empresas, cujos integrantes se passavam por Delegados da Polícia Federal, Procuradores da República e Auditores Fiscais. Envolvendo mais de 300 policiais federais, a operação já cumpriu 23 mandados de prisão temporária e 64 mandados de busca e apreensão nos estados de São Paulo, Santa Catarina, Rio de Janeiro e Sergipe. Em São Paulo, além da capital, os trabalhos ocorrem em Hortolândia, Santos e Avaré. Nos demais estados a ação desenvolve-se nas respectivas capitais.

I gist: “… Operation Repique targets fraudsters and confidence tricksters who extorted businesses while passing themselves off as federal police officials, federal prosecutors, and tax authority auditors. … Arrests in São Paulo (the city of São Paulo, as well as Hortolândia, Santos and Avaré); Santa Catarina; Rio de Janeiro; and Sergipe.

In Juiz de Fora, Minas Gerais, meanwhile, raiding a $R15 million (estimated)-a-year electronic bicho racket:

A Polícia Federal, com apoio do Ministério Público Federal e da Justiça Federal, deflagrou na manhã de hoje, 7, em Juiz de Fora, a operação Corvina, com o objetivo de prender integrantes de uma organização criminosa que atuava há anos na exploração do jogo a partir de máquinas caça-níqueis e vídeo-bingo em Juiz de Fora e Belo Horizonte/MG, Rio de Janeiro/RJ e São Paulo/SP. … Nas investigações contou-se com a participação do Banco Central do Brasil, da Receita Federal do Brasil e do Conselho de Controle de Atividades Financeiras – COAF. Estima-se que a quadrilha lucrava R$ 15 milhões por ano.

Gist … busted a criminal organization involved in exploiting electronic gambling devices in Belo Horizonte, Rio and São Paulo. Federal financial crimes agency (the Tupi FinCEN, sort of), the tax man and the Bank of Brazil took part.

O nome da operação é uma alusão a uma espécie de peixe que habita tanto o mar quanto o rio, e nesse caso, refere-se à conexão Minas Gerais – Rio de Janeiro.

The name of the operation alludes to a species of fish that lives in both fresh and salt water, which in this case refers to the Minas-Rio connection.

Press conference at 10:30am in Belo Horizonte.

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