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Ivan Rocha
April 22, 1991

IVAN ROCHA, Brazil

Rocha courageously denounced the existence of a "crime syndicate" -- a group which he claimed police and politicians were involved in -- over radio Alvorada in Teixeira de Freitas, Bahia, Brazil.

He was 33 years old and had plans to soon marry his girlfriend, Rosaria Monti, a student at the School of Arts. On the afternoon of April 22, 1991, he was on his way to pick her up when, while crossing a vacant lot, the journalist-broadcaster disappeared and was never seen again.

Rumors ran rife. It was even said that he had been undercover before his disappearance and that his real name was Valdeci of Jesus. But his colleagues from the Bahia Journalists’ Union criticize the police’s lack of commitment during  the search for Rocha’s whereabouts.

The journalist's mother is kidnapped by the police-- according to her own testimony – an occurrence that is repeated with the main witness in the investigation, Cirlene Alves Neto. Both were released. Over the years several police officers were arrested as suspects but in the end they were not only released for lack of evidence but the case was closed.

Ivan Rocha's body was never found. Despite the resistance of prosecutors in Teixeira de Freitas, the IAPA’s Brazilian Rapid Response Team investigated, believing that the process could be re-opened. That never happened.



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