Since New Year’s Day, a wave of horrific prison massacres in Brazil’s north and northeast have left more than 110 inmates dead, many decapitated and disemboweled, with no end in sight. This is prison-gang warfare, pitting the São Paulo-based Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC), now one of the largest criminal organizations in South America, against a local affiliate of Rio de Janeiro’s Comando Vermelho (CV). The gangs’ 23-year alliance ended in September 2016 when the PCC declared war, citing CV betrayals. A few weeks later, PCC-led prison riots in three states killed about 20 people, foreshadowing January’s bloodletting.
Brazil’s prison gangs wield immense power on the streets, and driving the violence is a dynamic of competitive expansion.… Seguir leyendo »