Brazil’s Largest Drug Cartel Promises ‘World Cup Of Terror’
Hmm, this wasn't mentioned over at Travelocity.
A powerful Brazilian drug cartel has threatened to disrupt the 2014 World Cup with terror-style attacks if imprisoned gang leaders are transferred to a tougher prison as planned. The PCC gang (First Command of the Capital) mainly operates out of São Paulo jails, since so many of its leaders are now on ice. But their reach is worldwide, according to reports, and they have promised to stage attacks in São Paulo and Rio de Janiero during the World Cup and the upcoming Brazil elections. There will be 13 World Cup matches played in those two cities -- six of them in São Paulo.
The threats come just a week after daily paper O Estado de São Paulo revealed the details of an in-depth report by state prosecutors into the gang's activities, including a plot to kill São Paulo Governor Geraldo Alckmin.
The PCC's recent plans were discovered when phone calls were intercepted by police intelligence. The gang has vowed to attack both on the streets and in the jails.
This is just the latest threat in the country that has seen plenty of unrest this year as it prepares to play host to both the World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics. What has happened lately, you ask? Right now there are protesters out in force due to a teachers' strike, and things have turned violent. But larger protests have rocked major cities since June, with thousands taking to the streets, mostly in Rio, to protest rising taxes and government spending on the sports infrastructure rather than social concerns. During the ConCup Final between Spain and Brazil in July, police actually ran out of tear gas. Some players also reported being affected on the field by tear gas that was wafting into the stadiums.
FIFA responded by saying that any World Cup matches that got tear-gassy would be suspended. With tens of thousands potentially planning trips for the World Cup and Olympics, that has to look really good in the online brochure.
The Brazilian government continues to insist that everything is under control, but so far there has been enough stuff on fire to be seen from space, and hardly anyone is confident all hell will not break loose. We're rooting for Brazil of course. But right now we'd say tourists should not so much be thinking beer keg as powder keg.
READ: So Apparently A Few People Showed Up The Other Night To Protest Brazil’s Olympic Spending [SportsGrid]
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