Brazil: at least seven corpses found after police raid

Residents of a Brazilian favela on Monday found at least seven bodies in a swampy area in the suburbs of Rio de Janeiro, the day after an operation by an elite police unit accompanied by an “intense shooting”, announced local authorities.

“The preliminary information we have indicates that seven bodies were found,” said the Military Police of the State of Rio (south-east) in a statement, specifying that agents had been sent to the scene to supervise the work of ‘an investigation unit.

The Globo TV channel, which showed images of dozens of residents around still unidentified bodies covered with white sheets, reports for its part of eight corpses found before the arrival of the police in the Salgueiro complex, a set of favelas. from Sao Gonçalo, about 35 km from Rio.

“The corpses were thrown into the swamp, with signs of torture, piled on top of each other. It really looks like a massacre, ”a witness told this television channel.

Military Police confirmed that officers from the Special Operations Battalion (Bope), an elite police force feared for its muscular incursions, had visited this area dominated by drug traffickers on Sunday, the day after the death of a sergeant. from police.

“The Bope went to the Salgueiro after receiving information of the presence of one of the individuals who took part in the attack that killed the sergeant on Saturday. The team (of Bope) was stormed (Sunday) in a marshy area and an intense shooting ensued ”, we can read in the press release.

The police said they seized two pistols, ammunition, more than 800 cannabis bars and more than 3,000 sachets of a substance “resembling crack” during this raid.

The Defender of the People announced on Twitter to go there to help families.

The NGO Fogo Cruzado, which lists the shootings in the state of Rio de Janeiro, has counted 58 episodes of violence with at least three gunshot deaths since the start of the year, including 43 during police operations.

In May, a bloody raid left 28 people dead in the Jacarezinho favela, the deadliest operation in the history of the city of Rio. In October, two officers involved in the raid were charged with manslaughter by a local court.

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