Mozambique prosecutor shot dead outside his home

2016-04-13 11:53


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Maputo - A public prosecutor who worked on a wave of kidnappings that has plagued Mozambican cities since 2011 was shot dead outside his house by unknown men, the police said on Tuesday.

Kidnapping gangs have targeted scores of businessmen of mainly Asian descent and their families in the capital Maputo and Beira, Mozambique's second city, in recent years.

“Marcelino Vilankulo was killed by gunfire on Tuesday evening as he was in his car and was about to enter his house in Matola [a suburb of Maputo],” police spokesperson Emidio Mabunda told AFP.

The police said they had no information on the number of attackers or the type of weapon used.

Vilankulo was working on the case of Danish Satar, a Mozambican of Pakistani origin who is suspected to be involved in the kidnappings.

Satar, from a family alleged to be at the centre of the country's criminal underworld, was arrested in December 2015 by Interpol in Italy and extradited to Maputo.

The police believe he has been one of the masterminds behind the kidnappings, in which ransoms can amount several million of dollars.

“Shocking. Yet again. Another terrible blow to the rule of law,” British High Commissioner Joanna Kuenssberg said on Twitter.

In May 2014, Dinis Silica, a judge heading the criminal investigation section of Maputo's court, was riddled with bullets in downtown Maputo.

He had just authorised the detention of a businessman suspected to be involved in the kidnappings.

Vilankulo also worked on the assassination of French-Mozambican lawyer Gilles Cistac, who was murdered in Maputo in March 2015 for apparently political reasons.

Read more on:    mozambique

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