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Disillusioned Historical Officers Leave the Judiciaria

HOMEPAGE NEWS REPORTS INDEX INVESTIGATION PHOTOS NEWS JANUARY 2011
Original Source: CORREIO_DA_MANHA: 15  JANUARY 2010
15th January 2011 By:Ana Isabel Fonseca/ Tania Laranjo

With thanks to Ines for translation

Paulo Rebelo, who led the Lisbon and Faro directorates will have to request a permanent sabbatical in order to continue his active life outside of the PJ.

Teofilo Santiago will be the only criminal investigation advisor left following the departure of Jose Braz, Jaime Fernandes and Mouro Pinto.

15th January 2011
Comments (12)

Disillusioned with Justice and unhappy with the recent budget cuts, various historical officers from the Policia Juduciaria have decided to abandon the institution. Jose Braz, director of the Lisbon PJ, from the International Cooperation Unit and Mouro Pinto, from the Porto Directorate will retire, leaving the Judiciaria with just one criminal investigation advisor: Teofilo Santiago, who holds a gold medal and is responsible for the 'Face Oculta' case who will be left solely in charge of the institution's top post. Four superior coordinators and two coordinators of criminal investigation, including Paulo Rebelo, ex director of the Faro and Lisbon PJ, and Calado Oliveira, Setubal PJ coordinator will also abandon the institution, although for different reasons: the former has made known his wish to request a permanent sabbatical and the latter has already requested early retirement. The superior coordinators Ana Mafalda from the Interpol cabinet, Joao Neto, from the Faro Directorate and the coordinators Luis Baptista and Antonio Carvalho who led the combat against theft and fires, both from the Lisbon Directorate will also pass to retirement.

Disillusion with the institution to which they have dedicated so many years of their careers is the main reason leading the historical Judiciaria officers to close the door. Dedication to the public cause is no longer sufficient and the responsible officers show signs of fatigue to continue fighting for something that they consider not to be defended. 'To belong to the Policia Judiciaria is almost an embarrassment that we have hide from the neighbours' say some of the most qualified officers from the institution. The incursion also affects intermediary officers.

Thirty-one chief inspectors have submitted requests for retirement, which means that in various sections there will be the need for accumulation regimes or interim functions. 'There are chief inspectors who are working as coordinators and there are inspectors carrying out the functions of chief inspectors', Carlos Garcia revealed to CM, also stating that the arrival of 30 new chief inspectors could fail to cover the shortages. 'The 30 new chief inspectors could never arrive'.

LISBON PJ LOSES CHIEFS

The Lisbon PJ would be the most affected by the departures. As well as the director Jose Braz, the unit would also lose the superior coordinator, Paulo Rebelo. Antonio Carvalho and Luis Baptista, both coordinators, are also leaving. The Lisbon Judiciaira Directorate would therefore be deeply affected by the leaving of chiefs. Jose Braz exercises a fundamental role in that directorate.

MEASURES MAY WORSEN

If the protests made to the Justice Ministry do not have any effect, the PJ officers threaten more serious measures. 'If our situation is not resolved we will take more serious measures. We will not allow this situation to go on for any more time' explained Carlos Garcia from the PJ Criminal Investigation
Union.

"WE VERY MUCH REGRET ABANDONING SUSPECTS": Carlos Garcia, President of the PJ UNION.

Correio da Manha ' What is your assessment of the strike'

Carlos Garcia ' The strike exceeded our expectations, we had a participation of almost 100%. The discontent and disappointment of the investigators have caused this problem.

CM: Are you worried that the PJ's image will be affected'

Carlos Garcia: People know that we give of our best every day. We regret very much that at 17.30 we abandon the suspects. But it is the Government's responsibility and for once and for all they have to accept the fault is theirs.

CM: When the strike is over will you return to normal working hours'

Carlos Garcia: We are tired of working thanklessly, of working extra hours without receiving anything in return. At this moment we know that the Government does not have money, but we just want to see our profession be dignified.

CM: Is a demonstration planned on the 18th'

Carlos Garcia: We are going to protest in front of the Justice Ministry. We know that at least 600 inspectors will be present at the demonstration.

STRIKE HALTS INVESTIGATIONS AND SUSPECTS ARE LEFT FREE

After more than a month of strike the PJ investigators do not appear to have the intention of abandoning their cause. Not even the fact that the participation of almost 100% is affecting investigations that have been carried out over various years and that different suspects continue to be free would appear to move them from their intention. During the last few weeks various arrest warrants were not complied with. Since 15th December the PJ has only detained one person for theft in Lisbon. Last year, during the same period, 39 thieves were made prisoners. The fact that inspectors have stopped duties at 17.30 has enabled drug shipments to enter Portugal and thieves to commit assaults after the PJ stops its vigilance. Complex and drawn out investigations have sunk. Many burglary suspects, alerted by the strike, avoid being home before 09.00 in order not to be caught during house searches. At least 50% of cases have ground to a halt, waiting for follow up by the Public Ministry.

GANG PROFITS FROM THE PARALYSIS TO LAUNCH WAVE OF ATTACKS

During the last weeks of the past year a violent gang profited from the paralysis of the Judiciaria to launch an unprecedented wave of attacks in the areas of Fafe, Guimaraes and Felgueiras. Chemists, shops and cars were some of the thieves' targets, who managed to make more then one robbery per day. An example of this occurred on 15th December. In less than one hour, the gang attacked a chemist shop in Ataes, Fafe, taking a large sum of money. Less than 40 minutes later, the same gang attacked a man in an office in Silvares, also in Fafe. At gunpoint, the victim was force to hand over his Jeep. At the time the PJ was immediately informed, but the strike prevented inspectors from going to the scene of the crime.

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