The journalist and the indigenist were killed with hunting weapons. photo EFE
Between Friday and Saturday, Brazilian authorities identified the remains of British journalist Dom Phillips and indigenous expert Bruno Pereira, and confirmed that they were shot and killed “with typical hunting ammunition” in the Brazilian Amazon, where a third suspect surrendered to the police.
In a statement replicated by the AFP news agency, the authorities said that “the remains of Bruno Pereira are part of the material” being analyzed and explained that the death of Phillips – whose remains were identified on Friday evening -, was caused by a blow to the chest and that Pereira was hit by three blows, one of them to the head.
These revelations resolve parts of the question marks about the deaths of Phillips, 57, and Pereira, 41, who were last seen on June 5 as they were boating to the town of Atalaia do Norte, west of the state of Amazonas, as part of his research for a book on environmental conservation.
The remains of both they were in an area targeted by the first of three suspects so far detainedthe fisherman Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira, known as ‘Pelado’, who on Tuesday confessed to having buried the bodies in the jungle near that city.
The city is located in the Javarí Valley, which is home to a huge indigenous reserve near the border with Peru and known for its danger. Drug traffickers, fishermen and illegal miners operate there.
Police said their investigations indicate that criminal gangs operating in the region have no connection with the double murder. However, the Union of Indigenous Peoples of the Javarí Valley (Univaja), whose members actively participated in the research, said that “an organized group planned the crime in detail”.
Dom Phillips, the British journalist murdered in Brazil. Photo Joao Laet / AFP
They investigate the motive for the killings of the journalist and the indigenist
The authorities they are still investigating the cell phonethe circumstances of the crime and its possible links to illegal fishing, a very lucrative business that experts say is used to launder drug money.
On Saturday morning, a third suspect, Jefferson da Silva Lima, known as “Pelado da Dinha”, testified at a police station in Atalaia do Norte.
Authorities released a photo of the detainee, a short man wearing a cap and a red shirt.
Speaking to the G1 news site, Commissioner Alex Perez Timóteo said that according to all the evidence and testimony gathered, “Pelado da Dinha” “He was at the scene of the crime and actively participated in the double murder that took place”.
Police said on Friday their investigations indicate that criminal gangs operating in the region are not linked to the double murder, but the Union of Indigenous Peoples of the Valley of Javarí (Univaja), whose members actively participated in the searches, has stated that “an organized group has planned the crime in detail”.
Bruno Pereira, the indigenist murdered in the Brazilian Amazon. Photo Barbara Maisonnave Arisi via AP
The case of Phillips and Pereira sparked a wave of international solidarity and once again inflamed criticism against far-right government Jair Bolsonaro, accused of encouraging invasions of indigenous lands and sacrificing the conservation of the Amazon for exploitation. economic.
Bolsonaro sparked outrage by asserting that Phillips and Pereira’s foray was “an adventure not recommended” and that the reporter was “frowned upon” in the region for his informative work on illegal activities.
The Brazilian president, who this Saturday is participating in a motorcycle march in Manaus, the capital of the Amazon, reacted to the deaths of Phillips and Pereira on Thursday, a day after the discovery of their mortal remains, with a short tweet: “Our condolences to relatives and may God comfort everyone’s heart.