SAO PAULO – Seven people were killed overnight in separate shooting incidents in Brazil’s largest city, authorities said Friday.
The fatalities included a motorcycle policeman fatally shot by two assailants also traveling on a motorcycle.
The latest killings followed the Sao Paulo state government’s release of third-quarter crime statistics that showed an alarming spike in violence last month.
Sao Paulo city witnessed 135 homicides last month, an increase of 27 percent from August and a 96 percent jump compared with September 2011.
The rise in murders coincides with a resurgence of attacks against law enforcement, with 86 state police officers killed in the first nine months of the year, a spokesman told Efe.
Authorities suspect the recent murders of police were the work of the First Capital Command, or PCC, Sao Paulo’s largest criminal outfit.
The PCC is involved in drug and arms trafficking and truck hijackings. EFE