Brazilian Prison Gang Frees Reporter 24 Hours After Their Video is Shown on TV

A Brazilian reporter working for Globo, Brazil’s leading television network, has been freed nearly two days after being kidnapped by a criminal gang demanding improvements in the nation’s prison system.

Globo television says reporter Guilherme Portanova was released in Morumbi, an upscale neighborhood of São Paulo overnight Monday.

Portanova was freed around 12:30 am and arrived half hour later at Globo’s headquarters in São Paulo. He said he was not hurt and had been fed by his kidnappers.

Portanova and a technician for Globo were seized early Saturday by members of the First Command of the Capital gang, the same group that has been terrorizing the state of São Paulo since May.

They have killed dozen of people, burned buses, and sprayed with bullets bank branches, public buildings and police stations.

The kidnappers released the technician Saturday and gave him a DVD, saying Portanova would be freed only after the video was broadcast.

Globo television aired the video, in which masked gang members displayed weapons and criticized the nation’s overcrowded prison system.

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