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The head of the investigation confirmed the assassination was carried out by paramilitary members with the "very likely" participation of politicians.
Rio's Civil Police have identified some of the people responsible for the assassination of councilwoman and civil rights activist Marielle Franco, General Richard Nunes, head of security for Rio de Janeiro told local news. The names of those implicated have not been made public.
Nunes said he will present the findings before Dec. 31, when the period for military intervention in Rio ends according to the decree signed by un-elected President Michel Temer. "It is not a hate crime... it is a crime that has to do with her political action against some interests. And paramilitaries, certainly, were not the intellectual authors of the crime but the executioners," Nunes explained.
Marielle Franco, an Afro-Brazilian lesbian and feminist socialist councilwoman, who was critical of police violence and the right-wing government, was assassinated in Rio de Janeiro along with her driver Anderson Gomes the night of Mar. 14, two weeks after she was named a rapporteur in a special commission to monitor military intervention in Rio de Janeiro.
Brazil’s Minister of Public Security, Raul Jungmann, said Friday that he is sure the assassination of Councilwoman Marielle Franco was conducted by politicians, public agents, and paramilitaries, who he says are the same people preventing the resolution of the case.
"We are investigating that plot involving public agents, involving powerful politicians, involving militias and other structures. We are helping Rio authorities so they can advance quickly and present who are the guilty, who executed, and most importantly, who ordered this crime... Wherever they are and whoever they are, we'll get there," Jungmann said.
Three days prior to the killing, Marielle had denounced the deaths of two youths during a military police operation in the Acari community.
"We must speak loudly so that everybody knows what is happening in Acari right now," she had posted on Twitter. "The 41st Military Police Battalion of Rio de Janeiro is terrorizing and violating Acari residents. This week two youths were killed and tossed in a ditch. Today, the police walked the streets threatening residents. This has always happened and with the military intervention things have gotten worse."
No arrests have been made because authorities fear that one arrest could alert others to escape.