09/10/2013 11:10 BST | Updated 07/12/2013 05:12 GMT

Brazil's Ten Thousand Unexplained Deaths


Photo: Mohamed Soudy

The recent arrest of ten police officers in the Favela da Rocinha, Rio de Janeiro, for their alleged involvement of the murder of 40 year old bricklayer and father of four, Amarildo, might have come as a shock to the outside world, but to many Brazilians it was something that they have come to live with as a regular occurrance in Brazil, especially if your young, black, poor and live in a favela.

While this was a shocking case, it's only the tip of a long iceberg of alleged police executions, kidnappings and so-called accidents when confronting members of the public.

Recent Data collected by Brazilian sociologist, Michel Misse, of the Rio de Janeiro Federal University (UFRJ) and the Bar Association of Brazil/Rio de Janeiro (OAB/RJ), revealed horrific results that revealed more than ten thousand people were killed under suspicion of confrontation with Police in Rio de Janeiro between the years of 2001 and 2011.

The findings have prompted a campaign to be launched by the Bar Association of Brazil/Rio de Janeiro which started in August 2013, called "Disappearances of Democracy,".

The objective of the campaign is to pressure the state to release data about deaths for a database to be created and record all of the related information such as the name of the police officers involved, and the statements of the victims family members.

The aim of this recorded data would be for analysis by a disciplinary team to improve police action, protocols and the criminal justice system.

According to Michel Misse data results, Rio de Janeiro police have a higher rate of killings than the police of many other countries such as the United States, where the police are known to be sometimes trigger-happy.

Its been estimated that an average of 3000 people are killed annually in confrontations within a population of approximately 314 million Brazilians.

While in Rio de Janeiro, the figure is believed to be a total of one thousand in a city of 16 million inhabitants.

An example of this heavy-handed approach by the police in Brazil was the recent violence and deaths in the Complexo do Mare.

Ten people were killed and dozens injured when an operation by the armed police, who were allegedly chasing a group of robbers into the favela turned violent on a Monday afternoon in June 2013.