Rio police launch operation to nab drug dealer

AP News
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Posted: Apr 19, 2011 8:32 AM
Rio police launch operation to nab drug dealer

Police in Rio de Janeiro have launched a massive operation in the nation's biggest slum.

Police say they are searching for the drug gang leader in the slum of Rocinha, a sprawling area that holds more than 100,000 people.

About 200 police entered the slum at daybreak Tuesday. There was no immediate word on any injuries or deaths.

It was not immediately clear if police were preparing for a full-scale invasion of the area as part of the city's so-called slum pacification program. That tactic sees police push drug gangs out of an area and then set up a permanent presence there.

The pacification project has been carried out in more than 40 slums thus far. It is meant to improve security before Rio hosts matches for the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics.