However, the police presence has created a permanent state of war, which is escalating as both sides acquire more powerful and lethal weapons. Dani Monteiro, a state representative for Rio de Janeiro, explained: “I always hear from public security agents: 'We bought rifles because while the criminals had rifles, we had pistols. So they had rifles and we bought rifles. But one day they showed up with 762 [a more powerful rifle]. So we also bought 762s, but then they came up with long-range machine guns, so we had to buy those too.
Pro-gun policies Experts suggest that the increasing number of weapons in the hands of civilians tends to produce an increasingly intense state of permanent south africa phone number list warfare in Rio's favelas. This is the result of political changes stemming from President Jair Bolsonaro's pro-arms agenda . Since he took office on January 1, 2019, Bolsonaro has introduced more than 30 legal changes that make it easier for civilians to access firearms.
But the relaxation of access control mechanisms makes it easier to divert weapons to organized crime groups . "The federal government, in the figure of Bolsonaro, argues that pro-arms policies will help citizens fight crime, but it is crime that is benefiting from these policies," explains Cecília Olliveira, journalist, public security expert and executive director of the digital collaborative database Fogo Cruzado . The initiative collects data on armed violence in Rio de Janeiro and Recife. It adds that easier access to guns has been accompanied by a relaxation of control and supervision, without a corresponding expansion of police capacity to investigate gun crime. In her April 2021 decision to suspend parts of the presidential decrees to expand access to weapons, Federal Supreme Court (STF) Justice Rosa Weber cited that 55% of all firearms seized from criminals were obtained legally before from being stolen or sold illegally.