A total of 68 people are currently being tried by Praia district court on charges including robbery, murder and other crimes. 12 of these individuals are considered to belong to organized groups of delinquents and have been in preventative custody for more than a year.
More than 100 witnesses have been called in the cases – numbers that attest to the high degree of contagiousness of this so-called “petty crime” which, if not properly taken care of, can turn into a major headache for society and authorities alike.
The twelve individuals in question (Igor, Fotxa, João Paulo, Misse, Nando, Dakontcha, Nuquinha, Gelson, Olavo, Vando, Ismael and Mariozinho), whose ages range from 19 to 30, are being tried for various crimes allegedly committed between 2008 and 2009, including robberies, illegal possession of firearms, disorderly conduct and assault.
According to prosecutors, Igor (Eder Brown) has the longest list of crimes to answer for – 22 all told, including murder and racketeering.
Fotxa (Henriquer Xavier) is accused of 12 different crimes, including murder.
All twelve are accused of burglarizing homes in the Praia districts of Palmarejo and Tira Chapéu, stealing televisions, mobile phones, cash and various other goods. They are also accused of having committed armed robberies in which they physically assaulted their victims.
Police have recovered a large portion of the stolen goods, which the thefts would sell at a low cost.
The first two days of the trial took place last week to a full courtroom. Given the large number of defendants, the court decided to divide them into various different groups. The trial will continue until December 28 and resume between January 6 and 12, when it is slated to conclude.