Police carries out operation against international arms trafficking

Guns were brought illegally from the United States

Published in 15/03/2022 - 09:51 By Vitor Abdala - Repórter da Agência Brasil - Rio de Janeiro

Brazil´s Federal Police is executing today (Mar. 15) seven preventive arrest warrants against people accused of trafficking international weapons. The so-called Florida Heat operation, which is being carried out in the Brazilian states of Rio de Janeiro and Mato Grosso do Sul, and in Miami, in the American state of Florida, also includes searches and seizures.

According to the police, the criminal organization was illegally bringing weapons from the United States to Brazil in containers, and by mail. Weapons entered the country through the states of Amazonas, São Paulo, and Santa Catarina. The final destination of the shipments was a house in Vila Isabel, in the north of Rio.

The weapons were packed inside equipments such as welding machines and printers, and sent along with other products, such as telephones, electronic equipment, food supplements, clothes and shoes.

Once they were in Brazil, the gun parts sent separately were assembled and then distributed to criminal factions. According to the police, the gunsmiths have also used 3D printers.

Steakhouse

The money used in the purchase was sent through black market dealers. A Brazilian owner of steakhouses in Boston (USA) is suspected of passing the money on to other people in the United States.

The profit obtained from the resale of weapons in Brazil was invested in residential properties, cryptocurrencies, shares, vehicles and vessels.

The warrants were issued by the 1st Federal Criminal Court of Rio de Janeiro, and also include the seizure of assets at BRL 10 million ($ 1,974 million dollars).

The Homeland Security Investigations Agency of the American embassy in Brazil is also participating in the operation.

Translation: Mário Nunes -  Edition: Kleber Sampaio

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