Menezes shooting – Brazilian delegates arrive in UK

Two Brazilian delegates have arrived in Britain to meet with the Independent Police Complaints Commission and Metropolitan police over the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes.

Wagner Goncalves, from the country’s Attorney General’s office, and Marcio Pereira Pinto Garcia, from the Ministry of Justice, were due to meet John Yates, the Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Met on Monday. They are expected to meet with IPCC members on Wednesday.

Mr de Menezes, a 27-year-old electrician, was shot dead on a Tube train at Stockwell Station on July 22, after being mistaken for a suicide bomber. The shooting happened a day after a series of failed bomb attacks on the London transport network and two weeks after suicide bombers killed 52 people in a series of similar attacks.

There has been controversy over the shooting, after leaked information contradicted initial statements, which claimed that Mr de Menezes was wearing a heavy padded coat and jumped over a ticket barrier as he ran from police. The leaked document revealed that Mr de Menezes was not wearing a heavy jacket and did not run from police before he was shot.

Relatives of Mr de Menezes have continued to call for Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair to resign. His mother, Maria de Menezes, told the BBC that the policeman who killed her son should be punished.

Jean’s brother Giovanni also told the BBC that the family were “shocked” by the attitude of the police and called for video footage from the Underground to be released “so the world can see what they did to an innocent man”.

Mr de Menezes’ family have also expressed anger at an offer of £15,000 made to the family by Scotland Yard. Len Duvall, chair of the Metropolitan Police Authority, admitted that the offer had caused “great confusion.” Mr Duvall said that the £15,000 sum was intended as a “ex gratia sum”, intended as “immediate and tangible financial assistance and in part payment of any compensation awarded as a result of legal proceedings.” He said: “Letters written in tragic situations such as this do, of course, have to be legally crafted and, as a result, can appear insensitive.”

Sir Ian Blair has rejected calls to resign. He had told reporters on the day of the shooting, that it was directly linked to the anti-terror investigation following the London bomb attacks. However, in an interview with the ‘News of the World’, Sir Ian said that he did not know that Jean Charles de Menezes had been wrongly shot until the morning after the incident.

Downing Street has also backed the Metropolitan Commissioner. On Sunday, a spokesperson for Tony Blair, who is currently on holiday in Barbados, said that Sir Ian had the Prime Minister’s full confidence.

A relative of one of the victims of the July 7 London bomb attacks has also expressed concerns that the bomb attack victims have been forgotten in the wake of the de Menezes shooting and condemned attempts to “crucify” police over his death.

Diane Gorodi, whose sister, Michelle Otto, was killed in the Russell Square explosion, said that Mr de Menezes’ death was a “dreadful mistake”, but said she was upset that the 52 bomb victims appeared to have been forgotten in the “hysterical” quest to blame someone for Mr de Menezes death.

A vigil is being held at Downing Street on Monday evening by to mark the first month anniversary since Mr de Menezes’ death. Supporters of Mr de Menezes’ family are expected to hand over a letter requesting a public inquiry into the shooting.


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