HomeNewsBriefNew PCC Crime Boss Consolidates Power on Brazil-Paraguay Border
BRIEF

New PCC Crime Boss Consolidates Power on Brazil-Paraguay Border

BRAZIL / 10 JUL 2018 BY FELIPE PUERTA EN

The presence of a new Brazilian crime boss operating on the border with Paraguay illustrates the sophisticated expansion strategy of Brazil’s most powerful gang and the important role the border region plays in transnational organized crime.

Sources in Paraguay’s security forces told news outlet ABC Color that Sérgio de Arruda Quintiliano Neto, alias “Minotauro,” an alleged member of the First Capital Command (Primeiro Comando da Capital – PCC), is the new crime boss in the Paraguayan border town of Pedro Juan Caballero, where the criminal group maintains a well-established presence.

Locally, Minotauro also goes by his last name, Neto, and he uses Paraguayan identification documents under the name Celso Matos Espíndola. He may have begun operating in the region to fill the vacuum left when PCC leader Elton Leonel Rumich da Silva, alias “Galã,” was arrested in Rio de Janeiro earlier this year. Galã had allegedly led the organization in the same border region since mid-2016.

Minotauro rose to power in Rio de Janeiro’s Rocinha favela, and reports leaked to security forces show that the Brazilian police had already suspected him as the new PCC leader in Paraguay.

The crime boss made headlines in March after he allegedly ordered the murder of a police officer in Ponta Porã, the Brazilian town lying directly across the border from Pedro Juan Caballero. The police countered with an operation in which they found Paraguayan identification documents but failed to arrest Minotauro.

Brazilian authorities have also levied charges against the gang leader, including money laundering, falsifying public documents and identity theft.

InSight Crime Analysis

Brazilian gang presence along the border with Paraguay is not new. But the PCC’s interest in consolidating power in Pedro Juan Caballero shows growing sophistication in its transnational organized crime activities, a necessary strategy as it contends with other gangs moving into the region from Brazil, among them Red Command (Comando Vermelho).

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Criminal Migration

Criminals from Brazil and other countries take refuge in Pedro Juan Caballero and its surrounding border region because it serves as a strategic location for continuing criminal activities while evading justice in their home countries.

Minotauro’s alleged rise in the Paraguayan city’s underworld also shows that a new generation of Brazilian criminals is cropping up in Paraguay. And they are willing and able to aggressively challenge institutions and commit violent acts against not only other criminals, but also local businesses and authorities.

Compartir icon icon icon

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Related Content

GENDER AND CRIME / 10 JUN 2016

A joint operation involving authorities in Paraguay, Spain and France has broken up a multi-country sex trafficking network, illustrating some…

ELITES AND CRIME / 9 DEC 2014

Three Congressmen in Paraguay have been accused of links to Brazilian drug trafficking groups, as more politicians get drawn into…

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 25 FEB 2021

Itapúa is a minor marijuana producer but an important transit corridor for cannabis smuggled into Argentina. Some areas of the…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – Ten Years of Investigating Organized Crime in the Americas

FEATURED / 2 NOV 2020

In early 2009, Steven Dudley was in Medellín, Colombia. His assignment: speak to a jailed paramilitary leader in the Itagui prison, just south of the city. Following his interview inside…