Rio de Janeiro police, soldiers capture famed drug trafficker

Brazil Rio de Janeiro,Rogerio 157 was one of Rio's most wanted criminals

Almost 3,000 police and troops were involved in the operation, the authorities said.

The capture of the man known widely by his nickname "Rogerio 157" was a high profile success for security forces, who despite military backing are struggling to control well-armed narco gangs in the city's poor neighbourhoods, known as favelas. He is accused of drug trafficking, extortion and murder.

Brazilian police arrested on Wednesday in a massive operation drug kingpin Rogerio Avelino da Silva, known as "Rogerio 157", the most wanted criminal in Rio de Janeiro.

Minutes after the arrest of Rogerio 157 Wednesday morning, there were reports of gunfire could be heard in the Rocinha. This year, about 4,000 people - including 124 police officers - have been victims of violent deaths in Rio de Janeiro, according to news4europe.

Rogerio 157 made it on the most-wanted list in September, after gunmen loyal to him fought street battles with gang members of a jailed rival drugs boss in Rocinha.

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However, da Silva slipped away.

Over the years, Rio authorities have tried multiple strategies to bring order to the favelas, where nearly a quarter of the population lives. "He was in modest house with two security guards when the police arrived", one of the police officers responsible for the arrest told G1 news.

Authorities say da Silva oversaw drug trafficking operations in the Rio slum of Rocinha, one of Brazil's largest. Some of them took selfies with the suspect.

Da Silva moved to take complete control of Rocinha and began collecting taxes from Rocinha residents and seizing control of cooking gas distribution, among other economically important activities.

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