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News > Latin America

Sao Paulo Admits Responsibility in Paraisopolis Favela Deaths

  • Citizens demand justice for the victims Paraisopolis, Sao Paulo, Brazil.

    Citizens demand justice for the victims Paraisopolis, Sao Paulo, Brazil. | Photo: Twitter/ @MonicaSeixas

Published 23 December 2021

Two years ago, the Military Police violently stormed a 5000-people funk party, firing tear gas canisters and pellet bullets. Nine people died as a consequence of the resulting stampede.

On Friday, the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo agreed to compensate the relatives of nine young people who died during a Military Police action deployed in the Paraisopolis shantytown while a massive funk party was being held in Dec. 1, 2019.


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The Sao Paulo Public Defender's Office and the Attorney General's Office finalized the administrative agreements for the payment of compensation by the subnational government, which recognized its responsibility for what happened after the Police violently stormed a funk show where some 5,000 people were dancing.

According to the official reconstruction of the events, the Military police were looking for two suspects who had hidden among the people.

To force the suspects out of their hiding places, the officers fired tear gas canisters and pellet bullets, causing a stampede that left dozens injured and nine dead, all of them young people between 14 and 23 years old.

The tweet reads, "Family, friends, and social movements held an act in memory of the 9 young people who died at the Sao Paulo Military Police operation carried out at the Paraisopolis DZ7 funk ball two years ago."

In the agreements reached with their relatives, the state of Sao Paulo acknowledged that the deaths were the result of "a failed action" and undertook to pay compensation. The amounts of these compensations were not disclosed at the request of the victims' relatives.

Currently, the Sao Paulo Prosecutor's Office is also processing criminal actions for murder and fraud against a dozen military police officers involved in the Paraisopolis operation. The magistrate in charge of the case is reviewing the available information in a "second analysis."

"The State exterminates black people not only in Rio de Janeiro's marginal neighborhoods. It also happens in other places such as Sao Paulo, Bahia, or Pernambuco," the Voz da Comunidade Editor Jonas Di Andrade commented.

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