He was not a drug trafficker, but a doctor: the hitmen confused the victim in Rio de Janeiro | International

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The drug trafficker Taillon de Alcântara Pereira Barbosa, on the left, and the doctor Perseu de Almeida, in images shared on social networks.

The Civil Police of Rio de Janeiro found this Friday the bodies of those suspected of murdering three doctors on the Barra da Tijuca promenade, in Rio de Janeiro. The attack, carried out early Thursday morning, had a strong impact in Brazil, in part because one of the deceased is the brother of federal representative Sâmia Bomfim. Many thought it was a political crime. The police have not yet ruled out any hypothesis, but at the moment the idea is gaining strength that the murderers targeted the wrong target due to the resemblance between one of the victims and a local drug trafficker.

The bodies of the four suspects were found in two cars in a neighborhood near the crime scene. Two of them have already been identified: Philip Motta Pereira, known as gloss, and Ryan Nunes de Almeida. The first led a militia (as paramilitary groups are known in Rio) in the Gardênia Azul neighborhood.

The doctors were drinking beers at a beach bar. They had arrived in Rio to participate in a conference and went out for a drink on the promenade right in front of their hotel. Suddenly, in a matter of 20 seconds, the suspects got out of their vehicle, fired a volley of shots and killed three of them instantly. A fourth was injured and is recovering in the hospital; His life is not in danger.

Everything pointed to a commissioned execution, since there was no intention to rob or prior threats. The criminals did not say a word. The line of investigation indicates that the true objective of the massacre was to execute Taillon de Alcântara Pereira Barbosa, who is the son of Dalmir Pereira Barbosa, one of the main leaders of a militia that dominates part of the western area of ​​Rio. The son of the local mobster physically resembles one of the murdered doctors, Perseu Ribeiro Almeida.

Investigators believe Taillon participated in the murder of one of Lesk's allies, Paulo Aragão Furtado, known as Vin Diesel. On September 29, Taillon received parole, and since then he was in the spotlight. Furthermore, according to the police, the militiaman used to frequent the bar where the murdered doctors went. The police also believe that the crime was not planned in advance, but that the hitmen received information with the location of the alleged victim and decided to act at the moment.

According to the local press, the order for the executions of the perpetrators of the crime would have come from leaders of the main drug trafficking faction in Rio, the Red Command (CV), who did not like the media coverage of the case and the death of innocent people. The instruction was transmitted after a video call in which the leadership of the group, who is imprisoned in Bangu prison, on the outskirts of Rio, participated.

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Crime and its derivatives are part of the increasingly complex network of territorial control in the neighborhoods of Rio. The militia and drug trafficking, historical rivals, have been getting closer for years and in some cases allying against common rivals, what some specialists already call "narcomilicia." The distribution of power is sometimes decided with pacts, sometimes with bloodbaths.

One of the deceased doctors, Diego Ralf Bomfim, was the brother of representative Bomfim, one of the most combative left-wing parliamentarians in the Brazilian Congress, who is also married to fellow representative Glauber Braga. The two belong to the progressive Socialism and Freedom Party (PSOL), the same party as Marielle Franco; Rio councilor murdered in 2018.

The doctor's relationship with the deputy set off alarm bells and many thought of a new political crime, but police and authorities asked for caution. This Friday, another of the young politician's sisters, Dayane Raquel de Souza Bomfim, trusted that the investigation will clarify what really happened: "We don't know if they killed him for being Sâmia's brother or if they killed him for being in the wrong place in the wrong time or any other hypothesis,” he said from the wake, asking that there be no abuses or false news.

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