Bank robbers invaded the city of Araçatuba shortly after midnight Monday, taking hostages and placing explosives at several points to commit the robberies in a region where several bank branches are concentrated.
Bank robbers tie up hostages as human shields in their getaway cars in Brazil
At least three people were killed and four others injured on Monday after a group of heavily armed criminals invaded the Brazilian city of Araçatuba, in the interior of Sao Paulo, to perpetrate a series of bank robberies.
The criminals invaded the city shortly after midnight on Monday, took hostages and placed explosives at several points to commit the robberies in a region that concentrates several bank branches in Araçatuba.
According to videos disseminated by neighbors on social networks, some people were tied to the hood of the car as a “human shield” during the escape of the criminals.
Na fuga, os reféns foram amarrados nos veículos. Tentativa de impedir qualquer contra-ataque da polícia ao grupo. Deus guarde essas pessoas e todos de Araçatuba. Todas as agências bancárias do centro foram invadidas – informações preliminares. pic.twitter.com/lu0hBlcTCu
— Yuri Macri (@yurimacri) August 30, 2021
Witnesses told local media that the criminals were “heavily armed” with rifles and “looked like soldiers”.
Authorities did not report the identities of the victims, although the mayor said at least one of them was one of the criminals who was wounded and “abandoned” by his companions during the escape.
According to the police, the criminal group was made up of about 20 people and had explosives in at least 14 points of the city, so special tactical teams were sent to the town to help in the deactivation of the bombs.
Medical sources also reported that three of the wounded were hit by bullets and are hospitalized in serious but stable condition, while the fourth victim was a cyclist who suffered serious injuries when he accidentally approached one of the bombs and had to have part of his legs amputated.