Monday, October 10, 2011

They Got 'EM

Earlier, in this space, I posted on the brutal assassination of Patrícia Lourival Acioli.

Patricia, a judge who’d been assigned the task of keeping the corrupt cops of Rio de Janeiro in line, was  shot dead on the 13th of August as she attempted to enter the garage of her apartment building in the suburb of Niteroi.

Her murder came as a surprise to no one, least of all to Patricia herself.

What did come as a surprise was that her killers made such a paltry attempt to cover it up.

They started by riddling her car with 22 bullets of a type only available to the police and the military. thereby giving a clear signal of who did it and why it had been done.

And then they didn’t bother to disengage the surveillance cameras which registered their approach and departure.

And chose, as one of their gang, a member who was under indictment for other crimes, and had no excuse for his whereabouts at the time of the killing and promptly cracked when he was put under pressure.

All of them were cops.

And this guy, Lieutenant Cláudio Luis de Oliveira, who headed up the Military Police’s Seventh Batallion in the suburb of São Gonçalo, was the guy who gave them their orders.

The clear conclusion has to be that they were so confident of never being arrested, never being charged, that they didn’t worry very much about how they did it.

And that, in itself, says something about law-enforcement in Rio de Janeiro.

There’s lots more to tell about this story, and I hope that someday I will, but right now I have to catch a train from Rome to Firenze.

And I apologize for making this so very short.

Because the details are as fascinating as they are incredible.

Leighton - Monday


  1. Why is this still happening? There's a progressive government. Is it out of fear of the police and the violence they would carry out? Intimidation? Pressure?

  2. This is appalling. I look forward to hearing more. Rome and Firenze don't sound bad. These are the things that make life bearable.

  3. Ah, Kathy,

    There are so many Brazilians who keep asking themselves the same question. But the sad fact is that it does. By the way, I wrote in haste, and called that guy a lieutenant. In fact, he's a lieutenant-colonel. It remains to be seen, now, how he and his confederates will be punished. Expectations are that it will be greatly -- and I hope those expectations are fulfilled.


    There are even videotapes (from the security cameras) on the internet at the moment - showing a few of the conspirators taking up positions around her home prior to the murder. But the commentaries are all in Portuguese, so I didn't bother to give the links.
    And, oh yeah, Rome and Firenze ain't bad at all. In Firenze, I was fortunate enough to be invited by Annamaria Alfieri, author of "City of Silver". Read it yet? Good book. The view from her terrace is spectacular. Watch this space for a photo. But not next week. Because then, in my place, I'm gonna post a great guest contribution from our pal James R. Benn.

  4. What I think is absolutely the worst aspect of this is that what horrifies us the most is not the killing, the reason for it, the manner of it or the perpetrators. It's that they didn't bother to deceive anyone. Murders like this one are happening all over the world all the time, but we're used to being politely and considerately deceived, lied to for our own good, so that we don't have to make a stand.

  5. I can't wait to hear more of this story, but boy am I glad you caught that train!!!

  6. As soon as I saw "They Got 'EM" I immediately thought of this judge and her killers. Pride goeth before a fall, eh? I will wait patiently for more of the story.

  7. I find it also astounding that none of these people give a hoot about the fact that she had young children, which quadruples the horror and tragedy, and makes it even more terrible.

    Hope those responsible are tried, convicted and go to jail for decades.