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From Beast to Bicho

Captura de tela de 2013-11-20 20:18:28

Source: O Globo.

I took copious notes on the topic in 2006 — a year of living dangerously for Brazilian cops — but the trail has gone cold in recent years for the archetypal Brazilian editor in chief screaming, “A corpse, damn it, bring me a corpse!”

Starting in the 1970s, a small squadron of government agents abandoned the torture dungeons for the black market lottery known as “the animal game” — jogo do bicho — bringing with them all the brutality, intel gathering and military discipline of the dirty war against the leftists. Numbers racketeers helped pursue enemies of the regime, and the dictatorship paid them back with protection and impunity.

Document searches and interviews enabled O GLOBO to reveal details about those involved in this process.  At last ten agents, some military, others civilian, operated in or aided and abetted the world of the numbers rackets, rising to high ranks within the hierarchy, especially as Geisel began to apply the brakes to the infrastructure of the repression.  Influenced by military doctrine and at the cost of war in the streets, the rackets — once fragmented and informal — organized and centralized themselves. Below, some of the connections between them.

Captura de tela de 2013-11-20 20:17:59