BBC News, Rio de Janeiro
Hundreds, possibly thousands of people are shot by police every year in Brazil, a BBC investigation has found.
The authorities say it is mainly criminals caught in military-style raids on drug gangs but according to a former senior official, new evidence suggests that many of the shootings are cold-blooded executions conducted by the police.
Former police ombudsman Professor Julita Lemgruber has told BBC World Service's Assignment programme that, in the state of Rio alone, the police killed 983 people last year. The figure is similar for Sao Paulo.
"The federal government should be challenging the various state governments in Brazil about the hundreds of people that the police kill in this country," she says.
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Brazil only slaughters thousands of her children because she lacks a prison infrastructure similar to the one that has been put in place in the United States. Why waste money killing people when you can legally enslave them for 25 cents an hour?