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Montevideo, November 22nd 2017 - 03:44 UTC

Paraguay and Brazil after a 60-member gang that robbed US$ 40 m and terrorized a city

Tuesday, April 25th 2017 - 07:10 UTC
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Paraguayan officials are calling it the robbery of the century. The impressive number of robbers and display of weapons terrorized Paraguay's Ciudad del Este Paraguayan officials are calling it the robbery of the century. The impressive number of robbers and display of weapons terrorized Paraguay's Ciudad del Este
Earlier on Monday about 60 men moved into the city blew up the front of a private security firm and the vaults, while firing on police. Earlier on Monday about 60 men moved into the city blew up the front of a private security firm and the vaults, while firing on police.

Brazilian police near the border with Paraguay have exchanged gunfire with members of a gang who carried out what Paraguayan officials are calling the robbery of the century. So far three gang members were killed and two injured in the clash, police say. The number of robbers involved and display of weapons has led authorities to believe it is a one of Brazil largest criminal gangs.

 Earlier on Monday about 60 men moved into the Paraguayan city of Ciudad del Este, blew up with explosives the front of a private security firm, and fired on police. Unconfirmed reports suggest they could have stolen up to US$40m.

 After the robbery, the gang created a diversion by burning cars and attacking the local police station, and escaped after a two-hour shootout that left one police officer dead at the scene after the company's vaults were blown up.

 Police believe they fled in several of the security company's armored trucks and then may have transferred their booty to waiting boats at the Parana river. They were believed to have travelled 50km downriver to a region called Itaipulandia in Brazil, were they were intercepted by Brazilian police.

 Brazilian federal police came across 12 men who exchanged fire and then escaped, Brazilian Globo website reported. The men left guns, ammunition, flak jackets and explosives in the car they abandoned, police said. A large security operation is under way to try to recapture the gang on both sides of the border.

 The violent robbery started around midnight and ended after 3 a.m., neighbors said. It has left the city in a state of panic, especially because some of the robbers, unable go flee remained in the city opening fire indiscriminately.

 Schools in Ciudad del Este, Paraguay’s second largest city, located in the Triple Border with Brazil and Argentina, were closed on Monday.

Numerous witnesses said they heard the heavily armed men speaking in Portuguese, leading to speculation that they could be members of the First Command of the Capital (PCC), one of the largest criminal groups in Brazil. Weapons used included AK 47s, C4 explosives, infrared weapons, snipers and even anti-aircraft guns and a helicopter.

 The Prosegur headquarters in Ciudad del Este had entered the authorities’ radar in 2015 they found a tunnel running under the building. “They found an L-shaped tunnel that ran under Prosegur and connected to a house. Two years later, they managed to rob it,” said Richard Vera, Paraná's homicide chief.

Categories: Politics, Brazil, Paraguay.

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  • karenykarl

    The robbery in CIudad del Este is a major warning to every country in the Western Hemipshere, as gangs like this represent a major threat to national security. In recent years, narcotraffickers and smugglers have turned towards robbery, home invasion, and the fencing of stolen goods, as income supplements that of the drug trade. The phenomenon of armed gangs doing home invasions has been developing in Baja California lately. This criminal effort merely goes one or two levels beyond an already disturbing trend.

    Breakdown of Latino families and larger structural unemployment leaves youth with virtually no job opportunities, and this makes it easier for criminal gangs to dragoon squads of raw recruits into disciplined paramilitary units.

    Apr 25th, 2017 - 04:19 pm 0
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