Brazil probes rumor that set off panic run on state bank

Yahoo News, Reuters, 5/20/2013

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff said on Monday she ordered the Federal Police to investigate the source of a rumor that sent thousands of poor Brazilians running to state bank branches seeking payment of a monthly family stipend.

A rumor that payments of the Bolsa Familia program would be ended led crowds to line up over the weekend at branches of the Caixa Economica Federalgovernment bank to get their money. The rumor spread by word of mouth and cellphone text messages.

Angry beneficiaries smashed glass doors and automatic teller machines in some branches on Saturday in a surprising outburst that reminded Brazilians of chaotic scenes in crowded banks during financial crises two decades ago before Brazil stabilized its economy.

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Reports: 31 dead over weekend in Sao Paulo as crime wave rises

AP/Washington Post, 11/12/2012

Brazilian media are reporting that at least 31 people have been murdered in Sao Paulo in the last three days.

A police spokeswoman says the reported figure is accurate, though she says she has no official statistics.

Early Monday, at least one bus torched was torched in the city.

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Death toll mounts in Brazil as police face down gangs

John Lyons – The Wall Street Journal, 11/11/2012

At least 140 people have been killed in the past two weeks amid a deadly confrontation between police and a gang that controls much of São Paulo city’s trade in crack cocaine, state authorities said, prompting some schools and shops to close early in sprawling city outskirts.

Nearly 1,000 homicides have been reported in São Paulo this year, according to state officials, reversing a yearslong trend of declining rates. Some 90 of those killed were current or retired police officers, often killed in ambushes in what investigators say are hits ordered by a São Paulo gang, the First Command of the Capital, or PCC. In 2011, some 56 police were killed.

The wave of killings is likely to refocus attention on crime rates in a country preparing to host two global sporting events, soccer’s 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games. Despite full employment and an economic boom, Brazil’s national killing rate still remains one of Latin America’s highest, surpassing that in countries such as Mexico, which routinely makes the news for gruesome drug-related deaths.

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Multinational base in Rio could be installed this year

The base to be located in Rio de Janeiro is part of a larger project to create an Integrated Center to Combat Drug Trafficking in Brasília

O Estado de S.Paulo, 04/01/10

The Brazilian government began negotiations with the United States to create a multinational base in Rio de Janeiro to combat drug trafficking, which should open within the year. The Rio location will be part of a team with two existing bases located in Key West, Florida and Lisbon, Portugal. Currently, the Key West base patrols the Caribbean, while the Lisbon base is responsible for the North Atlantic. The base in Rio will control the South Atlantic.

The plan is part of a larger project to create an Integrated Center for Combating Drug Trafficking (Cicon) in Brasília.

The Brazilian government initiated talks with Lieutenant Brigadier Douglas Fraser of the United States Southern Command about the civilian base in Rio de Janeiro. Fraser arrived Tuesday morning in Brasília, where he met with Defense Minister Nelson Jobim and the general-director of the Federal Police, Luiz Fernando Corrêa.

The idea is to create a space in which representatives of the Federal Police, Navy, Air Force, Army and Center of Management and Operation of the Amazon System of Protection (Censipam) work together against drug trafficking and illegal contraband.

According to O Estado de S. Paulo, Brazil plans to build another similar base in Manaus.

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