Natal Brazil

Information about the city of Natal, in Brazil.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Illegal tunnel was being carved

A Spanish group which is building a hotel and a mall in Ponta Negra was carving a tunnel without any authorization.
The tunnel would pass under avenida Roberto Freire (the street which goes downhill to the Ponta Negra beach) and would connect the hotel to the beach street. It was discovered only because the workers broke a water pipe, and CAERN (the Water and Sewage Company) was called.

When CAERN reached the tunnel, it was already 3 meters high, 3 meters wide and 18 meters long (see photo). The city Government ordered immediate stop of the work. The owner of the hotel, Adolfo Sierra Calderon, went to the authorities, but didn't explain why he was building the tunnel.

Carving such a big tunnel is obviously against the law (probably a crime), and puts at risk the safety of many people; even in Brazil, this kind of act is unheard of. The Spaniards managed to burst another wave of criticisms against the foreigns who "come to Ponta Negra and do whatever they want". See comments by the readers of Tribuna do Norte here.

The name of the mall being built is Gorbea Shopping. Recommended for those who want to do business with people who don't seem to care much about respecting the law.

Update: the Public Prosecutors entered into an 'agreement' with the Spaniards. There will be no criminal suit. The Spaniards should 'donate' some equipment to be used in water sanitation or something similar; estimated cost is 'at least' R$ 20,000 (about US$ 10,000); the Prosecutors will be 'very rigorous' to guarantee that the Spaniards fulfill the agreement.

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

Brazil - Norway operation arrests criminals in Natal

A joint operation between the Federal Police of Brazil and Okokrim, the National Police of Norway, resulted in the prison of nine people in Natal and fifteen people in Norway.

Since March of 2006 (see archive here), there were suspicions that groups of Norwegian criminals were using Natal to launder illegal money.
The investigations by the Polices showed that the group called B-Gang was laudering money in Brazil. This is an important criminal organization in Norway, commanded by Pakistanis, charged of extortions, kidnappings and drug traffic.

The money obtained by the gang was sent to Brazil and used to build and buy luxury real estate. The gang was the owner of three real estate groups in Natal: Blue Marlim, Natal Invest and Grupo Capricórnio. Some Brazilian lawyers who helped the gang in Brazil were also arrested.

The Police were helped much by the work of two journals: Brazilian Tribuna do Norte and Norwegyan Dagens Naeringsliv.
The article in Tribuna, wich names of some of the people arrested, is here.
The article in Naeringsliv, in Norwegian, is here.

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