By Jay Forte, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – A former military police officer was arrested on Thursday (April 13th) by the civil police suspected of being the largest synthetic drug dealer in the city of Rio, according to a national government news source.
Leonardo Scorza – who had been arrested last year for the same reason – was arrested along with his wife, Letícia Lyra de Souza, with nearly R$120,000 in cash and drugs, according to spokesperson Fábio Asty, head of the 45th police department in Complexo do Alemão.
In the house of his wife, police seized approximately R$35,000 in cash, nearly 1,500 ecstasy tablets and several packages of another drug known as MD (MDMA), worth approximately R$80,000. They also found a 380 caliber pistol and even a machine to receive credit card payments.
The drugs were mostly sold at electronic music events, bars and nightclubs, and marketed by telephone and social networks. The investigations lasted eight months, according to authorities.
Fábio Asty told reporters, “It is a criminal organization, with division of labor, there is the main group that sells drugs at electronic parties here in the city of Rio de Janeiro, and also [the group that sells] at home.”
Bottles were also seized of a tranquilizer medicine used on horses (ingredient of the drug known as Special K), which according to the delegate, police are now investigating who the drug providers were.
“We already have the mapping of these suppliers and the investigations are proceeding to arrest all members of this criminal organization. Some drugs come from abroad and others are manufactured domestically,” said Officer Asty.
A source wishing to remain anonymous told The Rio Times that the availability of ecstasy and MDMA had increased dramatically in the last few years in Rio, compared to other drugs.
The American expatriate said, “Five years ago these drugs used to be hard to find here, and were only available to the ‘playboys’ and rich Brazilians, but now they seem common at electronic music events and parties.”