Drug traffickers don’t get away, says Public Safety Secretary Beltrame

Beltrame’s first Twitterview, translated into English

Leia aqui a entrevista do Secretário de Segurança Pública do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, José Mariano Beltrame, pelo Twitter, em português.

1) I’d like to know why the police haven’t been able to arrest the drug chiefs in the pacified favelas?

BELTRAME: “Last week we arrested ‘Playboy’ in the Complexo do Alemão favelas. In Cidade de Deus (City of God), we have so far arrested 576 criminals since the UPP was set up there. In Pavão-Pavãozinho, we got 125. These are a few examples.”

2) Is it possible to avoid the military police becoming “favela chiefs” in the pacified favelas?

BELTRAME: “The goal of the UPP is to return the territory to its rightful owners, the residents. When there is misconduct or abuse, officers are punished just as with any transgression of the law. But I’d like to point out to the citizenry that the UPP’s success depends on community participation, on information about misconduct. The channels for this are: police ombudsman’s office (3399-1199), the Internal Affairs Office (2332-6020) and the Disque-Denúncia hotline (2253-1177).”

3) What is the UPP budget for this year and how much has been spent on this policy from its start? 
BELTRAME – The 17 existing UPPs cost the state and the city of Rio de Janeiro a total of almost US$ 12 million equivalent. Another US$ 5 million have been drawn from [Eike Batista’s gas and oil company] OGX funding. I don’t know if you are aware, but the funds donated by OGX aren’t handed over to the state. We send a shopping list to the company, which makes the purchases and then donates the items to the state. So the company’s money doesn’t circulate in government coffers, nor those of the [Public Safety] Secretariat.  Our estimate is that the cost per hundred UPP police officers is US$ 3.8 million, equivalent.”

Secretary José Mariano Beltrame explained to tweeter @maricesario why the state decided on a strategy of advance public notice regarding police occupation prior to UPP installation:

“Our priority is the preservation of life, of the residents, this is why we give notice. Without a territory to dominate, the bandits lose power and then their capture is just a matter of time. But I repeat that community participation is essential, we need information,” said the Public Safety Secretary.
In answer to journalist Vitor Abdala, who writes blog Rio.40, and wanted to know how the state will be able to maintain the occupations that are part of the pacification policy, Beltrame said that “We are maintaining them, it’s possible and it’s being done. The state has not departed and won’t depart any pacified favela. [Civil] society should also be vigilant about keeping up the UPPs.” Abdala had two of his fifteen questions answered (the guy is a question machine and a strong critic of Rio’s public safety policy).

Abdala’s other question that Beltrame answered was about the reason for using four helicopters and armored vehicles, if the Secretary knew there would be no resistance in Mangueira [occupied last weekend, soon to have the 18th UPP]. The Secretary explained that “we expected an absence of resistance in Mangueira, but even so you can never be too careful. It’s because of this strategy that we haven’t had any resistance. We would rather work this way than have surprises”.


About Rio real

American journalist, writer, editor who's lived in Rio de Janeiro for 20 years.
This entry was posted in Brazil, Transformation of Rio de Janeiro / Transformação do Rio de Janeiro and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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