A tragedy that shames the Brazilian justice system

On the morning of October 2, the rector of the Federal University of Santa Catarina, Professor Luiz Carlos Cancellier de Olivo, parked his car in the Beiramar Shopping Centre in Florianópolis. Shortly afterwards he committed suicide by leaping to his death from the top floor into the open central space of the building. Professor Cancillier … Continue reading A tragedy that shames the Brazilian justice system

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Relative calm ends on the Michoacán coast

As I explained in another post seven months ago, following the release from prison of Cemeí Verdía the regional self-defence forces led by the indigenous community of Ostula were able to offer greater protection to local people against the depredations of criminal groups. But remnant cells of the Caballeros Templarios cartel, led by people whose … Continue reading Relative calm ends on the Michoacán coast

Calling police to account in Bairro da Paz

This post is mostly about a recent event in a community in Salvador, the capital city of the state of Bahia, which I began to study in 2006. Bairro da Paz is an irregular settlement with a population of 60,000 residents, formed by a land invasion during the last years of military rule. The remarkable … Continue reading Calling police to account in Bairro da Paz

Nunca más?

During a recent visit to Buenos Aires, I visited the site of the former Navy School of Mechanics (ESMA), used as a clandestine torture and extermination centre under the last Argentine military dictatorship (1976-1983). The government of Néstor Kirchner turned the ESMA into an educational facility dedicated to the memory of the victims of the … Continue reading Nunca más?

Justiça Global takes the Cabula case to the UN

The NGO Justiça Global, responsible for a devastating analysis of extra-judicial killings by the police of São Paulo in 2006, has now taken the case of the killing of twelve men in the Cabula neighbourhood of Salvador, Bahia, to the office of the UN special rapporteur on extra-judicial, summary and arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns. As I … Continue reading Justiça Global takes the Cabula case to the UN

Judicial decision on Cabula deaths provokes criticism

In a post during May I reported that the Bahia Public Attorney's Office had concluded that the killing of twelve young people in the Cabula neighbourhood of Salvador was an extra-judicial execution. Judge Marivalda Almeida Moutinho has now absolved the nine officers accused of these killings, arguing, on the basis of police evidence, that they acted … Continue reading Judicial decision on Cabula deaths provokes criticism

Update on police killings in Salvador

The Bahia Public Attorney's Office has just (May 18 2015) published its findings on the deaths of twelve young residents of the Cabula neighbourhood of Salvador at the hands of military police of the Special Patrols Unit (Rondesp) mentioned in an earlier post. Investigators have concluded that this was an extra-judicial execution, and worse than … Continue reading Update on police killings in Salvador