“Biggest Massacre” Ever Committed At a Prison
A bloody riot of rival inmates erupted at a prison in Brazil, killing at least 56 people.
Media reports say, rioting inmates decapitated their rivals in bloody fighting between two gangs in a Brazilian jail. The uprising lasted for 17 hours.
The riot broke out Sunday afternoon and lasted through the night at a prison on the outskirts of Manaus, the capital of Amazonas state.
Sergio Fontes, the country’s security secretary dubbed the brutal killings as “the biggest massacre” ever committed at a prison in the state.
In addition, many said the riot is one of of the deadliest prison riots across Latin America in the past decade.
The riot also led to the escape of 112 prisoners from that prison.
The aftermath of the riot left a horrific scene inside the prison. Decapitated and burned bodies were piled in a concrete prison yard and placed in carts.
Fontes said in a news conference, “Many were decapitated, and they all suffered a lot of violence.”
He said the brutal killings aimed at sending a message from the Family of the North (FDN), a powerful local gang, to adversaries from the First Capital Command (PCC), one of Brazil’s largest gangs.
Fontes said, “During the negotiations (to end the riot), the prisoners had almost no demands.”
He added, “We think they had already done what they wanted: kill members of the rival organization.”
Prison Riots Are Not Something New in Brazil
The latest prison riot is not something new in Brazil. In fact, in October, deadly riots erupted at three prisons, killing 33 people in all. The violence included rioting inmates taking visitors hostage, beheading rivals and burning others alive.
In 1992, a riot in Sao Paulo’s Carandiru prison left 111 people dead.
Underfunded and Overcrowded Prisons
Human rights groups have been vocal in criticism over Brazil’s underfunded and overcrowded prisons.
Around 622,000 people were imprisoned in Brazil as of the end of 2014, most of them black males, making it the world’s fourth-largest prison population, after the United States, China and Russia.