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Brazilian police arrest councilman and three other suspects in murder of radio journalist in Goiás

The Brazilian Civil Police arrested four people on Feb. 9 in the town of Edealina, in the state of Goiás, who are suspected in the murder of radio broadcaster Jefferson Pureza. Those arrested include councilmember José Eduardo Alves da Silva, of the Party of the Republic (PR) who is accused by police of ordering the crime that occurred on Jan. 17, 2018.

The police investigation concluded that the crime was motivated by political issues and jealousy, G1 reported. Pureza strongly criticized the municipal administration and the actions of city councilors on his radio program, which, according to police, could have angered Alves da Silva and led him to plan the assassination of the radio broadcaster for the first time in January 2017. He told the officer responsible for the case that he gave up on going ahead with the crime.

Jefferson Pureza Lopes (Facebook)

In December, the councilman again made plans to kill the radio broadcaster after discovering that he had had a relationship with his ex-wife, according to the police investigation, as reported by G1. Alves da Silva claims that again he did not go ahead with the plan. However, police say that housekeeper Marcelo Rodrigues Santos mediated contact between the councilman and the perpetrators of the crime, Leandro Cintra da Silva and a 17-year-old teenager. The three also were also arrested on Feb. 9.

According to the Brazilian Association of Investigative Journalism (Abraji, for its initials in Portuguese), on Jan. 26, 2017, Pureza said on his radio program that Alves da Silva had ordered his murder. He also mentioned former Mayor João Batista "Boiadeiro" of the Brazilian Labor Party, stating that the two politicians would be responsible if something happened to him.

The Civil Police has 30 days to complete the investigation into the case, G1 reported. According to the police officer, it is still necessary to clarify the dynamics of the crime.

The assassination of Jefferson Pureza motivated the activation of the Tim Lopes Program for the Protection of Journalists, launched by Abraji in September 2016 to investigate murders, assassination attempts and kidnappings of media professionals and to continue the reports interrupted by the perpetrators of the crimes .

Angelina Nunes, program coordinator, and Rafael Oliveira, a member of the Abraji team, visited Edealina at the end of January to learn more about Puraza’s murder. The organization said it was following the case


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