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Second suspect arrested in search of missing British journalist

Brazil’s Federal Police have arrested a second suspect in connection with the disappearance of a British journalist and an Indigenous expert in a remote area of ​​the Amazon rainforest.

The second suspect, Oseney da Costa de Oliveira, 41, is the brother of Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira, a man believed to be the prime suspect in the case.

Missing British journalist Dom Phillips, a contributor to the Guardian and Washington Post, and Bruno Pereira were last seen on June 5 cruising a boat through a lawless region of the Amazon rainforest.

On Tuesday, police confiscated ammunition and an oar in the village of Sao Gabriel, where the two men were last seen. Police did not say why the items were confiscated, who owned them, or where they were found.

Before his own arrest, Oseney da Costa de Oliveira alleged that police tortured his brother Amarildo – known locally as “Pelado” – to try to extract a confession from him. His brother was arrested and detained on Friday.

Firefighters arrive at a camp set up by tribal peoples to search for Bruno Pereira and Dom Phillips in Brazil on June 14, 2022.
Firefighters arrive at a camp set up by tribal peoples to search for Bruno Pereira and Dom Phillips in Brazil on June 14, 2022.
AP
Police tape can be seen in Atalaia do Norte in an area where Indigenous expert Bruno Pereira and freelance British journalist Dom Phillips have disappeared.
Police tape can be seen in Atalaia do Norte in an area where Indigenous expert Bruno Pereira and freelance British journalist Dom Phillips have disappeared.
AP

According to Eliesio Marubo, a lawyer with the indigenous group UNIVAJA, the search for the missing men was drawing to a close on Tuesday as the area to be searched narrowed towards the end of the day.

Marubo said Indigenous searchers tipped off authorities after spotting tracks of the men in the area and helped focus the search.

“We understand that we are heading towards the end. The search area was further reduced,” he said.

On Monday, search parties from the army, navy, federal police, civil defense, fire brigade and military police discovered a backpack, a laptop and other personal belongings that had been submerged in a river.

The items were taken by boat by federal officials to Atalaia do Norte, the closest town to the search, where the investigation is taking place.

After analyzing the items, police confirmed they belonged to the missing men, including Pereira’s medical card and clothes.

Police said the backpack – which was also found tied to a tree by a river – belonged to Phillips.

“We understand that we are heading towards the end.”

Eliesio Marubo, UNIVAJA

In developments over the past week, police found traces of blood on a boat belonging to the prime suspect.

The investigation has attracted global attention, with the world’s most famous celebrities, lawmakers and sports stars calling for more to be done to find the missing men.

Actor Mark Ruffalo, soccer legend Pelé and US President Biden are among the notable names urging the Brazilian government to step up search efforts.

Indigenous people help Marines search for indigenous expert Bruno Pereira and British freelance journalist Dom Phillips in Atalaia do Norte, Amazonas state, Brazil, June 14, 2022. The search for Pereira and Phillips, who disappeared in a remote area of ​​the Brazilian Amazon are continued after the discovery of a backpack, laptop and other personal items submerged in a river. (AP Photo/Edmar Barros) new
Indigenous people help marines search for indigenous expert Bruno Pereira and British freelance journalist Dom Phillips in Atalaia do Norte, Amazonas state, Brazil, June 14, 2022.
AP

With postal wires

https://nypost.com/2022/06/15/second-suspect-arrested-in-search-for-missing-british-journalist/ Second suspect arrested in search of missing British journalist

JACLYN DIAZ

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