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Brazil: State Offers Reward for Information that Helps Solve Crimes

(May 9, 2014) On May 6, 2014, the Brazilian state of São Paulo launched a State Reward Program (Programa Estadual de Recompensa) designed to offer up to R$50,000 (about US$22,624) to citizens who can provide information that helps the police fight crime, in a manner that is relevant to the investigative process, or that helps locate fugitives from justice. (Press Release, Government of State of São Paulo, SP Recompensa em até R$ 50 mil Denúncias que Solucionem Crimes (May 6, 2014).)

The governor of São Paulo, Geraldo Alckmin, was quoted as saying that the reward may be paid to any individual who provides information that resolves crimes that have yet to be solved or who helps with the apprehension and arrest of a criminal whose crime has been established but who has yet to be arrested. Alckmin further explained that the help of citizens who provide information is very important because it saves lives and assists in the arrest of criminals (id.).

A citizen who wants to provide information must access the website Web Denúncia (last visited May 8, 2014), which offers the individual giving the assistance a protocol number and password so that the person can track the use of the information provided. In case of a reward, the citizen is notified and will receive a virtual credit card that will allow withdrawals at any ATM machine of the Bank of Brazil, without the need for identification. The identity of the citizen is kept confidential throughout the whole process, including the payment of any reward (Press Release, supra).