HomeNewsBriefViolent Crime Increases Outside Brazil's Major Cities
BRIEF

Violent Crime Increases Outside Brazil's Major Cities

BRAZIL / 28 JAN 2013 BY MARGUERITE CAWLEY EN

Brazilian government officials have reported an eight percent increase in violent crime in Minas Gerais for 2012, pointing to rising security challenges in areas beyond Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo.

The State Department of Social Defense (Seds) reported that violent crime rose 7.8 percent in 2012, as compared with 2011, in the southeastern Brazilian department. Over 71,500 violent crimes were registered in 2012, nearly 5,700 more than the previous year, along with 62 more homicides than 2011. R7 News noted that the department’s 2012 murder rate could be even higher than reported, as the Minas government does not provide murder statistics.

The departmental capital and country’s third largest city, Belo Horizonte, registered a 5.3 percent rise in violent crime and a 1.8 percent increase in homicides, reported G1 Globo, with violent crime defined as murder and attempted murder, rape and attempted rape, theft, kidnapping and extortion.

State Secretary of Social Defense Romulo de Carvalho Ferraz cited the drug trade as one significant factors linked to the rise in violent crime.

InSight Crime Analysis

Other regions of Brazil also reported high crime levels for 2012 and the beginning of 2013. São Paulo saw a dramatic 18.2 percent rise in homicides, thanks in part to the ongoing bloody feud between local gangs and the police forceFolha reported that the southern city of Araraquara, located northeast of São Paulo, registered a homicide rate of one murder every three days in early 2013, while Grande Vitoria, capital of Espirito Santo, saw a particularly violent week in December 2012, culminating with five deaths registered in three hours, according to G1 Globo. Meanwhile, in November 2012, the small northern state of Sergipe was reported by the same news source to have the sixth highest homicide rate in Brazil, according to a Ministry of Justice list that placed Alagoas, Espirito Santo, Paraiba, Para and Parnambuco, respectively, in the top five and did not include São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro.

Statistics pointed to drops in Rio de Janeiro murder rates in 2012, likely spurred by the deployment of special police forces (UPPs) in favelas traditionally run by drug gangs. However, militias responsible for invading the favelas prior to the UPP arrival have been criticized for pre-announcing the invasions, thus giving criminal groups time to relocate. Increasing crime in other regions of the country could be the result of criminal gangs formerly ruling Rio’s favelas moving outside the city in search of new territory.  At minimum, the data and news reports suggest the need to expand the focus of new security measures to include regions beyond the country’s two largest cities.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

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.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

BRAZIL / 8 JAN 2021

As part of a mounting campaign going after criminal finances, police in Rio de Janeiro have asked courts to seize…

BRAZIL / 8 MAR 2021

Criminal dynamics in Brazil, particularly its drug trafficking routes, have been shaken up in recent years by the rapid expansion…

COCAINE / 5 JAN 2021

The assassination of Albanian national Adriatik Tresa inside his luxury property in Ecuador has revealed details of his alleged criminal…

About InSight Crime

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Extensive Coverage of our Chronicles of a Cartel Bodyguard

23 SEP 2022

Our recent investigation, A Cartel Bodyguard in Mexico’s 'Hot Land', has received extensive media coverage.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime, American University Host Illegal Fishing Panel

19 SEP 2022

InSight Crime and the Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University discussed the findings of a joint investigation on IUU fishing at a September 9 conference.

THE ORGANIZATION

Impact on the Media Landscape

9 SEP 2022

InSight Crime’s first investigation on the Dominican Republic made an immediate impact on the Dominican media landscape, with major news outlets republishing and reprinting our findings, including in …

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Sharpens Its Skills

2 SEP 2022

Last week, the InSight Crime team gathered for our annual retreat in Colombia, where we discussed our vision and strategy for the next 12 months.  During the week, we also learned how to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Colombia’s Fragile Path to Peace Begins to Take Shape

26 AUG 2022

InSight Crime is charting the progress of President Gustavo Petro’s agenda as he looks to revolutionize Colombia’s security policy, opening dialogue with guerrillas, reforming the military and police, and…