The Federal Police uncovered a complex and multimillion dollar illicit firearms trafficking system from Europe to South America.
Article continues below
A company based in Asunción, Paraguay, was responsible for importing thousands of pistols, rifles and ammunition from several European based manufacturers in Croatia, Turkey, Czech Republic and Slovenia.
The weapons were imported from Europe to Paraguay, where they were shaved and resold to groups of intermediaries who operated on the border between Brazil and Paraguay, to be resold to the main criminal factions in Brazil.
It is estimated that since the beginning of the investigations, the company under investigation imported around 43,000 weapons to Paraguay, moving around R$1.2 billion reais in 3 years.
During this period, 67 seizures were carried out, totaling 659 weapons seized in Brazilian territory, seizures were carried out in 10 states of the federation: Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, Paraná, Mato Grosso do Sul, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais, Espírito Santo, Bahia and Ceará.
The operation was carried out by the Federal Police in partnership with the Federal Public Ministry and international cooperation with the National Anti-Drug Secretariat of Paraguay (SENAD/PY) and the Public Ministry of Paraguay.
The action also included FICTA (International Task Force to Combat Trafficking in Arms and Ammunition), which is made up of HSI (Homeland Security Investigations), SENASP (National Secretariat of Public Security) under the supervision of the Service for the Suppression of Trafficking in PF weapons.
The process is ongoing at the 2nd Federal Court of Salvador/BA, which issued 25 preventive arrest warrants, 6 temporary arrest orders and 54 search and seizure warrants in three countries, Brazil, Paraguay and the United States.
In Brazil, the warrants were served in Rio de Janeiro/RJ, São Paulo/SP, Sorocaba/SP, Praia Grande/SP, São Bernardo do Campo/SP, Ponta Grossa/PR, Foz do Iguaçu/PR, Brasília/DF and Belo Horizonte/MG. ■