Bruno and Dom: Investigation targets link with organized crime – 06/23/2022 – Poder

PF investigators returned this week to Atalaia do Norte (AM), the closest town to the Vale do Javari indigenous land, for a new phase of investigations into the murders of indigenist Bruno Pereira and British journalist Dom Phillips.

The objective in this new phase is the analysis of contradictions in the testimonies already given, the collection of more evidence and the attempt to identify possible principals.

The investigation is carried out in conjunction with the Civil Police of Amazonas and is accompanied by the State Public Ministry and the MPF (Federal Public Ministry), also in a joint operation.

MPF members told the Sheet that one of the hypotheses investigated is that the illegal fishermen involved in the crime are financed or armed by some criminal organization operating in the region.

But, according to them, until now there are not enough elements for the transfer of the investigation to the federal competence in an exclusive way. This would occur, for example, in case of direct influence of international drug trafficking in the deaths of Bruno and Dom.

The first to confess to participating in the murders was fisherman Amarildo Oliveira, known as Pelado, according to information released by the PF. He lived in the São Gabriel community, on the banks of the Itaquaí River, outside the indigenous land.

Pelado’s confession took place on the night of June 14, according to the PF. The next day, he was taken by the police to the isolated area where Bruno and Dom’s first belongings were found. The bodies of the two were found on the same day 15, based on indications made by Pelado.

He is temporarily in prison, as is one of his brothers, Oseney de Oliveira (aka Dos Santos), who denies any involvement in the crime.

Also according to the PF, a third suspect, who also confessed to participating in the murders, is Jefferson da Silva Lima. The Justice ordered the temporary arrest of Lima. A fourth suspect was arrested this Thursday (23), in SP.

Another four people are suspected of participating in the concealment of the bodies.

Pelado’s testimonies contain some contradictions, such as the fact that he fired the shots.

These disagreements, according to police officers participating in the investigations, occurred due to an attempt by the fisherman to try to get a version according to which he had a smaller role in the double homicide, with less cruelty.

Police have already established that Bruno was shot at point-blank range. He also identified that there was an exchange of fire from the moment the indigenist was hit for the first time.

According to the expertise made by the PF, hunting weapons were used in the crime. The indigenist was shot three times; the journalist, one.

On June 17, just two days after the bodies were located, the PF even released a note in which it said that there were no masters or criminal organizations behind the murders.

The emphatic position does not match the lines adopted by those who are in charge of the investigations.

Both MPF and PF members do not rule out the existence of masterminds, albeit more generally, in the sense that criminals may have guided the search for a solution to the obstacles that were being posed to illegal fishing in the region.

Bruno was one of those responsible for the indigenous surveillance service implemented by Univaja (União dos Povos Indígenas do Vale do Javari).

Indigenous guards daily pointed out the presence of invaders on the indigenous land and its surroundings, mainly fishermen and illegal hunters. These same indigenous people undertook the search for the bodies of Bruno and Dom.

Drug trafficking is a hypothesis raised in the investigations, but police officers on the front line of the case do not see a direct connection between illegal fishermen and the trade and transport of drugs in the border region.

What investigators are trying to find out is whether there is an effective connection between illegal fishermen and the buyers of these fish who would also act in the drug trade.

The suspect involves a Peruvian nicknamed “Colombia” who lives in the region. The investigation tries to advance on the possibility of financing illegal fishing activity, especially arapaima.

The main motivation for the crime, according to the evidence gathered so far, is the conflict between illegal fishermen, whose activities were intensely opposed by Pereira and the indigenous surveillance service.

The suspects involved stated that they did not invade indigenous land to fish for arapaima. They said this only happened in the vicinity, which is also illegal.

The version does not hold up in the face of the daily notes made by the indigenous people of the surveillance service, who report repeated invasions of the protected territory.

According to investigators, the five people suspected of helping to hide the bodies are relatives or from the same community. Among these people, according to the investigators heard by the report, is a second brother of Pelado, Eliclei Oliveira, known as Sirinha.

THE Sheet was in the São Gabriel community on the 11th — six days after the disappearance of Bruno and Dom and four days before the bodies were found — and interviewed Sirinha.

He denied his brother’s involvement in the crime: “I don’t believe my brother was involved in any of this.”

Families in São Gabriel live off fishing; of cassava, lemon, papaya and watermelon plantations; and pig farming.

The point where the community is located is less than an hour from the Funai (National Indian Foundation) inspection post, which is the gateway to the Vale do Javari indigenous land, considered the second largest in Brazil.

“I saw Bruno [Pereira] once, up there. I was fishing tambaqui. He was inspecting. He just asked if I was okay, if I was fishing,” Sirinha said at the time. “Bruno didn’t stop here. He would go up there, in the indigenous communities.”

Sirinha also said that Pelado was assaulted by police at the time of his arrest. According to the report, the brother was taken to a stream and suffered drowning and aggression. “They beat him a lot. They were judging him, so that he would say something. He left there unconscious.”

THE Sheet did not locate the suspects’ defenses. Last week, lawyer Ednilson Tananta, who defended Pelado and other family members, said that the defense’s position would be presented in the event of a criminal case.

About Abhishek Pratap

Food maven. Unapologetic travel fanatic. MCU's fan. Infuriatingly humble creator. Award-winning pop culture ninja.

Check Also

Justice converts into preventive arrest of suspect of killing elderly couple with stab wounds: ‘A bit extremely cruel’, cites judge | Rio de Janeiro

The Justice of the River converted into preventive the arrest of Cristiano Lacerda, the main …