Considering the last five years, the Civil Police of the Federal District (PCDF) seized a total of 862 long and large-caliber weapons, 36 rifles, 83 rifles, 55 machine guns and 537 shotguns. The survey carried out by Metropolises indicates that last year, precisely when the leadership of the First Capital Command (PCC) was transferred to the Brasília Federal Penitentiary, there was a record number of seizures of “weapons of war”, registering an increase of 51% compared to 2019.
Five years ago, there were only 7 rifles and 2 assault rifles captured by the PCDF. The number jumped to 30 rifles and 15 rifles in 2023, representing a 400% growth for these two groups of weapons. Last year alone, 215 long and large-caliber weapons were seized.
See the comparison:
Nelson Gonçalves, a specialist in Public Security and Police Education, recalls that the increase in the number of weapons seized could mean a number of things, including that police forces are working more intelligently. However, the big problem is that we do not know exactly how many illegal weapons are circulating in the country. Therefore, it is difficult to understand whether seizure indicators reach minimally satisfactory levels.
“Although seizures are increasing, it could mean that there is also an increase in the availability of illegal weapons on the local market. Because we know how many weapons were seized. But we also don’t know the percentage of weapons seized in relation to the weapons in circulation”, says Nelson Gonçalves.
Presence of criminal factions
Since 2019, the DF has received leadership from the Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC), the Comando Vermelho (CV) and the Família do Norte (FDN). All are considered extremely dangerous inmates and were confined in the Brasília Federal Penitentiary. The most significant arrival in DF prisons is that of Marco Willians Herbas Camacho, popularly known as Marcola. He is the top leader of the PCC and returned to the federal capital’s prison at the beginning of last year.
The establishment of organized crime in the DF is a cause for concern for the local Executive. During an exclusive interview with MetropolisesIn December, Governor Ibaneis Rocha (MDB) declared that members of criminal organizations are buying businesses and homes in cities around the DF. This movement, according to Ibaneis, generated an increase in crimes such as drug trafficking in the federal capital.
Recently, the PCC leadership released a “hail”, a kind of order for all members of the faction spread across the country to gather information about employees in the penitentiary systems, including those in the Federal District. The intention would be to obtain benefits within the DF Penitentiary Complex, Papuda.
For Ibaneis, the actions of organizations like the PCC are approaching the DF due to the transfer of big names from these groups to the Federal Prison of Brasília: “We see it with great concern, because they are taking over the surrounding area, buying homes and commercial establishments. This is all because of this approach. The increase in drug trafficking is something that generates the arrival of these criminal groups, and also the fact that they brought criminals to the Federal Prison of the Federal District.
Gonçalves, the Public Security specialist, explains that the elements surrounding a leader of criminal factions follow him wherever he goes. “They function as interlocutors between those on the outside and those inside prisons. This obviously brings a series of guidelines from the command of these organizations so that certain actions can be taken, which may include the acquisition and provision of weapons”.
Therefore, for the researcher, there is a correlation between the actions of criminal groups and the greater availability of illegal weapons on the market. “Almost always when you have individuals in the prison system who are important to the factions, there begins to be a transport of people who, in some way, have a connection with these individuals”, he comments.
Another issue, according to Nelson Gonçalves, is that large-caliber weapons are normally manufactured in other countries and arrive here through international trafficking. Furthermore, weapons function as a “bargaining chip” within organized crime to obtain other objects.
Rifle stolen from PM’s house
After returning from his trip at the end of January, a sub-lieutenant from the Military Police of the Federal District (PMDF) was surprised to find his house open and immediately looked for the arsenal he kept at his residence, but found nothing there. According to him, who also has a Collector, Sports Shooter and Hunter (CAC) registration, two rifles, a pistol, 220 rounds of ammunition and 11 magazines were stolen.
According to Gonçalves, it is important to understand that CACs form a category of individuals who, in theory, acquire legal weapons: “It is not possible to say that they are illegal weapons, except when these weapons leave the control of these individuals through theft, illegal sale or some action that makes this weapon illegal.”
Last year, 39 large-caliber weapons were stolen, stolen or lost in the Federal District. “The system is failing at entry, it is failing in not being able to identify the modus operandi of these individuals in the process of negotiating the entry of these weapons. That’s what the problem is. I think there is a lack of due care that we should have at our borders”, points out the researcher.
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