“Brazil dismantles ‘biggest destroyer’ of Amazon rainforest” – BBC

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” The authorities in Brazil say they have dismantled a criminal organisation they believe was the “biggest destroyer” of the Amazon rainforest. The gang is accused of invading, logging and burning large areas of public land and selling these illegally for farming and grazing. In a statement, Brazilian Federal Police said the group committed crimes worth more than $220m (£134m). A federal judge has issued 14 arrest warrants for alleged gang members. Twenty-two search warrants were also issued and four suspects are being called in for questioning. The police operation covers four Brazilian states, including Sao Paulo. Five men and a woman have already been arrested in Para state in the north of the country, Globo news reported.

The BBC’s Wyre Davies in Rio de Janeiro says details are still sketchy, partly because the police operation is focused on one of the most remote and inaccessible parts of the Amazon region. Political and police corruption is still rife in Brazil’s interior, our correspondent adds. That problem coupled with alleged ineptitude on the part of the federal government means that loggers and illegal miners are able to operate with impunity, he says. (…)” (source: BBC) (image source: BBC)

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(via BBC)