Update on the Marielle Franco case

On March 14, 2018, councilwoman Marielle Franco was murdered in a crime with clear political intentions. Recently, this week there have been advances in the investigation and there have been arrests of former officials and members of the Federal Police, in addition to those already imprisoned previously.

On March 24 of this year, federal deputy Chiquinho Brazão, Rio de Janeiro State Court of Auditors (TCE-RJ) counselor Domingos Brazão and the Civil Police’s delegate Rivaldo Barbosa were arrested by the Federal Police. The two Brazão brothers were identified as the ones who ordered the crime, while Barbosa was accused of having planned the murder. There are also former arrests, that of Ronnie Lessa, Marielle’s murderer, and Élcio de Queiroz, the driver of the vehicle during the execution of the murder.

Domingos Brazão had previously been investigated for vote buying fraud, administrative impropriety, homicide, corruption and now, again, murder. In addition, the suspects now arrested have been very close to the power that investigated the murder. “Strangely, Rivaldo takes over as head of the institution [the Civil Police], which would investigate the political crime against Marielle, on the eve of the murder. The person responsible for the election of Rivaldo was General Braga Netto, who, at the time, was involved in public security in Rio de Janeiro. That year, the Eastern Military Command, headed by Braga Netto, exercised full command over all public security. Braga Netto says that the person who appointed him was the Secretary of Public Security, also chosen by Braga Netto, General Richard Nunes” writes AND.

While the investigation points to the fact that the motive for the political assassination was over land grabbing and regulation and real estate speculation because Marielle Franco voted against a bill in the Chambers of Councilors in 2017. This bill benefited the mafias that control clandestine construction in certain areas. However, this project was approved, Marielle Franco’s vote did not influence the final result and, in addition, it would attract too much attention in a context where there was already talk of the major problem of insecurity in Rio de Janeiro.

However, as AND explains, “The crime in the context, the way and the place in which it was carried out, without mentioning the nature of the execution, indicates a political crime with the objective of attracting attention, destabilizing; which does not seem to fit with the direction of the investigation, which points to a crime with economic motivations, whose objective is, by nature, to go unnoticed.”

However, many question remain despite the fact that the current Minister of Justice, Ricardo Lewandowski, has declared the investigation as closed:

First: why was Rivaldo Barbosa designated the day before the execution of Marielle Franco by the intervening generals?

Second: why did Rivaldo’s designation take place, even though it was contraindicated by military intelligence because they considered him suspected as he is not being exonerated?

Third: why, during the military intervention, was there so much explicit interference, and the intervening generals did not take action?

Fourth: why was the murder of Adriano da Nóbrega, a member of the “Crime Office”, in 2020, during a strange police operation in Bahia, denounced as a “file burning” operation by his wife, not thoroughly investigated? Why was he killed, just when he was being investigated for involvement in Marielle’s death? Why isn’t the relationship that Adriano da Nóbrega had with Flávio Bolsonaro investigated, even having his wife and mother employed in Bolsonaro’s son’s office? Why doesn’t anyone say that Bolsonaro himself had visited Adriano da Nóbrega when he was arrested in 2004-2005?

Fifth: why was the testimony of the doorman of the Vivendas da Barra residential area not investigated, according to which, on March 14, 2018 ( the day of Marielle’s execution! ), Élcio de Queiroz, the driver on the night of the crime, entered in the residential area, with his name appearing in the visitors’ book, having gone to house 58, whose owner is Jair Bolsonaro? In other words, why didn’t the investigation determine whether Élcio de Queiroz went to Bolsonaro’s house on the day of the attack, as the residential area doorman stated!? The doorman, who said this in 2019, when Bolsonaro was president, was pressured and went back on his statements. But why didn’t the investigations return to this statement, seeking to verify this information? Why?”

We also attach a video from the Youtube channel of A Nova Democracia about the case of Marielle Franco:

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