Brazil: A suspect says he buried the bodies of the two missing people in the Amazon    Southwest

Brazil: A suspect says he buried the bodies of the two missing people in the Amazon Southwest

The police officer said the suspect, a 41-year-old fisherman named Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira, has admitted taking part in the “crime” but without specifying his role. The fisherman had been taken to the search site by the police to show them the exact location. Oliveira says the two men were killed “by firearms,” ​​said the police officer, who does not rule out further arrests. Shortly before, television cameras had filmed the suspect leaving a police station to be taken by boat to the police search site.

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Disappearance of two men in the Amazon: what we know

Disappearance of two men in the Amazon: what we know

The two men disappeared in the Javari Valley, near the second largest indigenous reserve in Brazil, where 26 indigenous people live, 19 of them in total isolation. This hard-to-reach region lies in the heart of the Amazon rainforest, where gangs of drug dealers are the main residents

Human remains found

Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira, nicknamed “Pelado”, was arrested on June 7th. Witnesses said they saw him passing at high speed on board a boat going in the same direction as Dom Phillips and Bruno Pereira’s boat before they disappeared. The second suspect, Oseney da Costa de Oliveira, known as “Dos Santos,” was arrested on Tuesday “suspected of involvement in the case,” according to federal police. According to the G1 site, it would be the first suspect’s brother. “Excavations have been carried out at the site, excavations are continuing, but human remains have already been found,” added Eduardo Alexandre Fontes. “Once we have been able to verify, thanks to the expertise, that these are indeed the remains of the bodies of Dom Phillips and Bruno Pereira, they will be returned to the families.”

The journalist’s Brazilian wife, Alessandra Sampaio, in a statement thanked “all the teams that carried out the research, especially the indigenous volunteers,” whose absence from the press conference was criticized by many observers. “Even though we’re still awaiting the final confirmations, this tragic result puts an end to the fear of not knowing where Dom and Bruno have been. Now we can take her home and say goodbye in love,” she said. “Today we also begin our fight for justice […] We will only have peace when the necessary measures are taken to ensure that such tragedies do not happen again.”

Danger Zone

The British journalist and the Brazilian expert were last seen on June 5 during an expedition to the Javari Valley. This region near the border with Peru and Colombia is considered to be very dangerous, there is a lot of drug trafficking, fishing and illegal gold panning. It has in recent years become a strategic axis for gangs of drug traffickers who transport cocaine or cannabis produced in neighboring countries along the river.

The author of dozens of reports on the Amazon, Dom Phillips, 57, who has lived in Brazil for 15 years, had traveled to the region again as part of research for a book on conservation. Bruno Pereira, 41, a recognized expert and defender of indigenous peoples’ rights, worked for many years at Brazil’s government agency for indigenous affairs (Funai). In particular, he oversaw the FUNAI office in Atalaia do Norte (Northwest), a location where the two men were to return by boat after their disappearance, and a program to protect isolated indigenous groups in the area.