Mozambique has expelled one of Brazil’s most notorious drug lords, who has been on the run for two decades.
Gilberto “Fuminho” Aparecido dos Santos was sent home on a Brazilian air force plane that left Maputo Monday with dozens of police officers onboard, the authorities said.
Fuminho, an alleged leader of the São Paulo-based First Capital Command (PCC) drug gang, is accused of shipping tonnes of cocaine around the world.
Brazil’s justice ministry said on Sunday that Dos Santos was already in a federal prison in the country.
Dos Santos was arrested last Monday in an international sting operation that involved agents from Brazil, Mozambique and the US Drug Enforcement Administration.
In a statement last week, the Brazilian police said."The prisoner was considered the largest supplier of cocaine to a gang operating throughout Brazil, as well as being responsible for sending tonnes of the drug to several countries.”
The Mozambican authorities decided on Friday to expel him for allegedly entering the country illegally but kept the decision secret until he had left.
He is an alleged leader of the First Capital Command (PCC), considered to be Brazil’s top criminal gang, which wields control over cocaine supply routes from Colombia, Peru and Bolivia.
Its leader, Marcos Willians Herbas Camacho, is serving a sentence of more than 200 years in a maximum-security prison in the capital, Brasilia. Dos Santos is accused, among other things, of financing a plot to help Camacho escape, police said.
Mozambique’s interior ministry announced Dos Santos’s expulsion in a statement and said he was also barred from the country for 10 years.
Dos Santos, who had arrived in Mozambique in March, was arrested at a luxury hotel in Maputo, along with two Nigerian nationals, according to the Mozambican authorities.
Police recovered a fake Brazilian passport, 100 grammes (3.5 ounces) of cannabis, 15 mobile phones and a car. He also had the equivalent of about $800 (£600) in Mozambican and South African currency.
Brazil issued an international arrest warrant for Dos Santos two years ago.
The PCC is believed to be the country's largest and most powerful drug gang and has been at war with Rio de Janeiro-based Comando Vermelho (Red Command) since 2016, when they ended an uneasy working relationship after the PCC moved to infiltrate drug smuggling routes controlled by Comando Vermelho.
The feud has spread to prisons across the country where members of the rival gangs are held.