BRASILIA ( Associated Press) – Brazil’s federal police on Saturday arrested three more suspects in connection with the June murders of a journalist and an indigenous expert in the far western part of Brazil’s Amazon rainforest.
Police said in a statement that the three captives were involved in hiding the bodies of the victims. They are said to be relatives of Amarildo da Costa Oliveira, known as “Pelado”, a fisherman who is one of the three early accused of the murders.
British journalist Dom Phillips, 57, and Brazilian indigenous expert Bruno Pereira, 41, were killed on June 5 in a boat they were traveling on the Itagua River, near the entrance to the Yavari Valley indigenous territory, which Bordering Peru. and Colombia.
A total of seven people have been detained for their alleged involvement or cover-up in the killings.
Prosecutors said there are three fishermen charged with murder in the case who killed Phillips and Pereira because they both asked to be photographed. The region is conflicted in terms of illegal fishing and hunting.
In an investigation stemming from the killings, police identified a man who allegedly carried false documents, known as “Colombian”, as Rubén Darío da Silva Villar in early July. According to the statement, the subject, who is a Colombian citizen, also used a Brazilian identity card and a Peruvian document.
Police described him as “the leader and financier of an armed criminal network dedicated to illegal fishing in the Valle del Yavari region, responsible for marketing large quantities of fish that were exported to neighboring countries.” “
According to police, in addition to three people arrested for their alleged involvement in hiding the bodies of Phillips and Pereira, two others were arrested in an investigation into illegal fishing.