Tag Archives: Suspected Murder / Murder

The police attack targeted the parties driving the deadly spike in COVID-19 in Brazil | Instant News


A civilian police officer walks in a nightclub during a joint operation with Procon (Consumer Protection and Defense Foundation) to target clandestine parties and crowds violating social distancing restrictions amid rising cases and deaths from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Sao Paulo, Brazil March 13, 2021. REUTERS / Amanda Perobelli

SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Police broke up an illegal party with nearly 600 people in a windowless Sao Paulo nightclub in the early hours of Saturday, highlighting violations of social distancing rules that have made the country’s outbreak the deadliest in the world today.

COVID-19 killed 12,000 Brazilians over the past week, more than any other country. With a total of 275,000 lives lost, Brazil’s death toll only lags behind the United States, where the epidemic has slowed dramatically.

Sao Paulo’s governor Joao Doria was among state and city authorities imposing restrictions as Brazil’s outbreak spiked to record levels, fueled by a more contagious local variant. However, many Brazilians still oppose the measures, pushed by President Jair Bolsonaro, who oppose lockdowns as unnecessary and job killings.

Sao Paulo officials have taken increasingly dramatic steps to show they are serious, including a amplified ‘blitzkrieg’ to suppress the city’s notorious nightlife.

With axes and assault rifles, police officers broke down the door of a nightclub in the city district of Capao Redondo, breaking through the darkness with lights in their guns. Hundreds of young attendees, some of them masked, huddled on the dance floor as police silenced the music and arrested the organizers.

“I can never imagine hundreds and hundreds of people in a place without a single window, with all doors closed,” said Eduardo Brotero, the police officer who ran the operation.

Jefferson dos Santos, one of the revelers of being forced to leave the party, voiced his disapproval of the operation: “We pay taxes and we know the risks, we may get sick or infect our family. But we need to do something in life. “

Consumer defense agency Procon-SP said it had fined about 100 companies for violating the latest restrictions. Carlos Cesar Marera, director of law enforcement at Procon-SP said the city’s clandestine party was being held via the internet.

“These young people, usually 18 to 23 years of age, gather at these parties without social distancing at a time when thousands are dying.”

Reporting by Leonardo Benassato in Sao Paulo; Written by Tatiana Bautzer; Edited by Brad Haynes and Alistair Bell

.



image source

Italian prosecutors are demanding life sentences for US students accused of murdering police | Instant News


ROME (Reuters) – An Italian prosecutor on Saturday demanded life sentences for two young Americans being tried on murder charges after a policeman was killed following a failed drug sale in Rome.

Finnegan Lee Elder, then 19, admitted to stabbing Mario Cerciello Rega in the early hours of July 26, 2019, while his friend Gabriel Christian Natale-Hjorth, then 18, was wrestling with another police officer.

Under Italian law, anyone who participates even indirectly in murder can face charges of murder.

Prosecutor Maria Sabina Calabretta said in her four-hour indictment that the attack on police was “disproportionate” and carried out with “the purpose of murder”.

The two Americans, both from California, said they had no idea that Cerciello or his partner, Andrea Varriale, were police officers, telling the court that neither of the men had identified themselves.

Varriale denied this, testifying that they had shown their badges to their two attackers. The Cerciello badge was not found at the crime scene.

Elder and Natale-Hjorth were on vacation in Rome at the time and were trying to buy medicine from a local dealer. They had told the court they were duped, but managed to snatch the bag from the middleman when he tried to run away.

They then agree to meet with the dealer again to get their money back in exchange for a bag, but the two cops show up. There were no men in uniform and the Elder had testified that they immediately attacked them, forcing him and Natale-Hjorth to defend themselves.

“I panicked and believed he wanted to kill me,” Italian media quoted Elder in court earlier this month as saying.

Police said Cerciello, 35, was unarmed at the time and stabbed 11 times by Elder with an 18 cm (7 inch) knife.

Italian media reported that the dealer was an informant who reported the theft of the bag, asking the police to step in.

In a court hearing last September, Elder apologized for the murder.

Natale-Hjorth initially told police he was not involved in the murder and did not know his friend had a knife. However, his fingerprints were found on a panel on the ceiling of the hotel room where the knife was hidden.

Attorneys for Elder and Natale-Hjorth have not yet filed their defense. A verdict at the trial is expected in April, legal sources said.

Additional reporting by Domenico Lusi and Giselda Vagnoni; Edited by Catherine Evans and Helen Popper

.



image source

Italy repatriates its ambassador and bodyguards who died in Congo | Instant News


GOMA, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Reuters) – A military plane leaving eastern Congo bound for Italy on Tuesday loaded the bodies of the Italian ambassador and bodyguards in coffins wrapped in the Italian flag, a day after they were shot dead in an ambush at the United Nations Convoy.

Ambassador Luca Attanasio, 43, and his bodyguard Vittorio Iacovacci, 30, died while traveling in a World Food Program convoy to visit a school feeding project. WFP driver Mustapha Milambo also died.

The two crates were loaded onto an Italian military cargo plane in the city of Goma in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, near the Rwandan border. The plane then took off for Rome.

According to the Congolese presidency, a two-car convoy was stopped on the road north of Goma by six gunmen, who killed the Milambo driver and took the other six passengers away. Soldiers and park rangers tracked the group and a gun battle ensued, during which the kidnappers shot the two Italians.

RWANDAN REBELS DON’T BLUE

Congo’s interior ministry blamed Rwandan Hutu rebel militias called the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) for the attacks. The FDLR, one of about 120 armed groups operating in eastern Congo, has denied responsibility for what it called the “cowardly killings”.

“The FDLR stated that they were not at all involved in the attack,” the group said in a statement.

The local governor said that the attackers spoke the Rwandan language Kinyarwanda.

The FDLR, set up by former Rwandan officers and militia blamed by the United Nations and others for the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, has been blamed for previous kidnappings, including two British tourists who were detained for several days in May 2018.

President Felix Tshisekedi sent his top diplomatic adviser to Goma to support an investigation by local authorities, and the Congolese envoy in Rome will hand over a letter from Tshisekedi to Italian President Sergio Mattarella, the Congolese presidency said.

Dario Tedesco, an Italian volcanologist living in Goma, pays tribute to his friend Attanasio.

“He was able to talk to all of us, very differently because, he adapted to each of us, (made) us feel we were important,” said Tedesco. “He believes in what he is doing and this shouldn’t be his last trip.” (This story corrects the number of passengers to six, in paragraph 4)

Reporting by Fiston Mahamba and Hereward Holland; written by Hereward Holland; editing by Nellie Peyton, Philippa Fletcher, Giles Elgood and Peter Graff

.



image source

Brazilian churches sparked controversy with LGBT + support for the Lenten campaign | Instant News


SAO PAOLO (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A large Brazilian church group has come under fire for supporting LGBT people for the first time in an annual LGBT fundraising campaign launched on Wednesday, in which they say homophobia causes the killings.

Every year, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Brazil (CNBB) begins its Brotherhood Campaign on Ash Wednesday, with a message from Pope Francis this year urging people “to overcome divisions and be united in life” with Brazil’s COVID-19 death toll reaching 240,000.

The declaration from the Brotherhood Campaign added that denial of LGBT + rights also led to deaths, with some 420 LGBT + killed in 2018 in Brazil, while levels of violence were also high against blacks and indigenous people as well as women.

“These killings were caused by hate speech, religious fundamentalism, by voices (from them) against the recognition of the rights of the LGBTQI + population,” said the declaration posted online.

The declaration, which was formally launched on Wednesday, sparked a backlash from senior conservative Catholic leaders, with some refusing to use fundraising campaign materials and unveiling plans to divert donations to their own programs.

About 80% of Brazil’s 210 million people are Christian – mostly Catholic and Evangelical – and the church tends to criticize LGBT rights, while President Jair Bolsonaro is known for making homophobic remarks.

“Special times, like Lent, are not the time to discuss controversial topics that go against the authentic doctrine of our church,” said Fernando Guimaraes, Archbishop of the Military Archdiocese who serves Brazil’s armed forces.

Guimaraes did not directly mention the LGBT + element of fundraising in a letter he wrote to CNBB, the country’s highest Catholic body, which usually leads campaigns.

Every five years, including this year, the campaign covers other Christian denominations, including Baptists and Anglicans, and is coordinated by the National Council of Christian Churches (CONIC), a non-denominational national body.

CNBB said in a statement responding to critics of the declaration that they still adhere to traditional Catholic thinking about gender and the declaration would have had a different style if it had been written on its own.

“Words are chosen and taken out of context,” Eliel Batista, an evangelical pastor and member of the CONIC committee who wrote the Brotherhood Campaign declaration, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“With this attitude, these groups prove that everything we talk about is true,” he said, noting that his opponents had chosen to call people LGBT +.

The CNBB campaign in 2019 raised around 3 million reais ($ 555,000), with 60% of Catholic dioceses and 40% of national CNBB funds for social causes.

LGBT + supporters welcome the church’s support.

“Everyone should be welcomed without discrimination,” said Toni Reis, president of the LGBTI + National Alliance, who is Catholic. “After all, we are all brothers and sisters, whether we are gay, lesbian or trans.”

($ 1 = 5.4057 reais)

Reporting by Jennifer Ann Thomas; Additional reporting by Fabio Teixeira; Edited by Rachel Savage and Belinda Goldsmith; Please acknowledge the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the Thomson Reuters charity, covering the lives of people around the world who struggle to live free or fair. Visit news.trust.org

.



image source

Brazilian churches sparked controversy with LGBT + support for the Lenten campaign | Instant News


SAO PAOLO (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A large Brazilian church group has come under fire for supporting LGBT people for the first time in an annual LGBT fundraising campaign launched on Wednesday, in which they say homophobia causes the killings.

Every year, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Brazil (CNBB) begins its Brotherhood Campaign on Ash Wednesday, with a message from Pope Francis this year urging people “to overcome divisions and be united in life” with Brazil’s COVID-19 death toll reaching 240,000.

The declaration from the Brotherhood Campaign added that denial of LGBT + rights also led to deaths, with some 420 LGBT + killed in 2018 in Brazil, while levels of violence were also high against blacks and indigenous people as well as women.

“These killings were caused by hate speech, religious fundamentalism, by voices (from them) against the recognition of the rights of the LGBTQI + population,” said the declaration posted online.

The declaration, which was formally launched on Wednesday, sparked a backlash from senior conservative Catholic leaders, with some refusing to use fundraising campaign materials and unveiling plans to divert donations to their own programs.

About 80% of Brazil’s 210 million people are Christian – mostly Catholic and Evangelical – and the church tends to criticize LGBT rights, while President Jair Bolsonaro is known for making homophobic remarks.

“Special times, like Lent, are not the time to discuss controversial topics that go against the authentic doctrine of our church,” said Fernando Guimaraes, Archbishop of the Military Archdiocese who serves Brazil’s armed forces.

Guimaraes did not directly mention the LGBT + element of fundraising in a letter he wrote to CNBB, the country’s highest Catholic body, which usually leads campaigns.

Every five years, including this year, the campaign covers other Christian denominations, including Baptists and Anglicans, and is coordinated by the National Council of Christian Churches (CONIC), a non-denominational national body.

CNBB said in a statement responding to critics of the declaration that they still adhere to traditional Catholic thinking about gender and the declaration would have had a different style if it had been written on its own.

“Words are chosen and taken out of context,” Eliel Batista, an evangelical pastor and member of the CONIC committee who wrote the Brotherhood Campaign declaration, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“With this attitude, these groups prove that everything we talk about is true,” he said, noting that his opponents had chosen to call people LGBT +.

The CNBB campaign in 2019 raised around 3 million reais ($ 555,000), with 60% of Catholic dioceses and 40% of national CNBB funds for social causes.

LGBT + supporters welcome the church’s support.

“Everyone should be welcomed without discrimination,” said Toni Reis, president of the LGBTI + National Alliance, who is Catholic. “After all, we are all brothers and sisters, whether we are gay, lesbian or trans.”

($ 1 = 5.4057 reais)

Reporting by Jennifer Ann Thomas; Additional reporting by Fabio Teixeira; Edited by Rachel Savage and Belinda Goldsmith; Please acknowledge the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the Thomson Reuters charity, covering the lives of people around the world who struggle to live free or fair. Visit news.trust.org

.



image source