Brazil: How really dangerous is it for tourists? Separating fact and fiction.... By Mad Abe (a.k.a. J.R.R.

Abrahão) The author is a practicizing criminal attorney, journalist, and published author of 60+ books in his homeland (Brazil), being also one of the authors of the book “BLOODY BRAZILIAN KNIFE FIGHTIN´ TECHNIQUES” (www.bioark.com.br) published by FESTERING PUBLICATIONS (www.unclefesterbooks.com). His site is www.supervirtual.com.br, the World´s largest free virtual library, and he can be contacted at: brazilian.contractor@gmail.com In the last Months, Brazil becomes once more a “star” of the international media, firstly because of an unacceptable high number of violent criminal attacks against foreign tourists, lastly on the "Battle of São Paulo", a criminal-terrorist organization's attacks against the Government and Society in general. For some time (1980-1996) I worked as an Intelligence Officer & Security Advisor, being one of my jobs to write short instructions on the basic system of the “DO´s & DON´Ts”, because some operative life´s could depend on how clear my debrief was. Time was ever short when someone was to be dispatched to some “hot spot” of the planet, and understanding my writings, done over the works of several other persons, ranging from newspapers to encyclopedias, and from other operatives texts to short-wave news some collaborator give us, was one of the utmost factors to the return “in one piece“ and out of a “plastic bag“ to home. For a time I also worked as a "contractor" (let's say, on my vacations from that tedious main job...), and I visited some exotic places in the early '80's (Lebanon, Angola, Mozambique, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and some others I forget...) that gave me the oportunity to "saw the elephant" more than once, up-close, sometimes with a very ugly face. Well, along these funny years I got shoot and stabed more than once, but I'm still alive and into one piece. It seems I learned the lesson! Hence, with that kind of pesonal experience, plus being an author of more than 60 books and booklets, I know these works are meaning to entertain, to give knowledge, and to help one’s intellect become better. To save one’s life, well, books are not the best choice. Conventional texts, wich are nothing more than concise books, are the same. So, here I choose to make a kind of “skip-list“ to help one’s decision. People’s way of life is not my business, hence, I touch upon topics many may find “sensible“ or even “too much intimate“ to talk about. Don’t worry. I’m here writing this to help you, be you anyone, livin’

your own life style, come to Brazil, and came back to USA (or elsewhere) alive and unhurt. What you like or dislike it’s really not up to me. I’m not a judge over anyone’s life style. You can think of me as a “contractor“ or “advisor“, a job I’ve done more than once, someone you hire to go “there“ in front of you to say to you and your loved one’s what things you could (or should) DO – and what DON’T. Just that, down & dirty. Of course, if you read this magazine, you’re intelligent enough to let me skip such obvious things as “be prepared in advance finding the US Embassy and Consulates addresses on Brazil“ and “if possible do not go by yourself but go on an excursion or at least use a reliable trip agent“ – I’ll be as right to the point as possible, because I know once one’s decided to go to a place, that people’ll go there even if it is in the middle of a war. Hence, let me be your “advisor“ to the dangers of the place I call home. And, of course, if you use ANY medicine, be it a controlled substance in USA or not, take the needed amount of it for the time you’ll spend in Brazil along you, but do not forget to take the Doctor’s Prescription along it, else you can get into trouble, because Drug Laws in Brazil are very strange sometimes. Be advised and warned! Before starting, let me advise you on two opposing directions, depending on the needs of your trip: If you are going on business, or on vacations. If you’ll need to be among the rich & powerful in Brazil, be it in the political, religious, artistic, business, or any other elite, you’ll need, of course, to be well dressed. In this case, you’ll need to rent a car, because Americans well dressed’ll attract criminals like sugar attract ants. Forget the bullshit about placing that gold Rolex or Bulgari watch on the pocket while on transit – you’ll need to rent an armored car with an English-speaking driver (and it’s not expensive by American standards, and came in all sizes, to fit in any wallet), and if the business may keep you all night long over expensive restaurants, theaters, and being in all that tuxedo-dressed people places, I advise you to hire a bodyguard (here called “Agente de Segurança”, a job well regulated by Law, with hundreds of professionals who work legally armed for private Security Firms, here called “Empresas de Segurança” – once in Brazil, or even in USA, you can search on the WEB using these words in Portuguese, the language spoken in Brazil, to find these services - oh, sorry, we Brazilians do not speak Spanish like all other people of Latin America...). Once more, they are not expensive to American standards, but not really cheap. On the other hand, if you go to Brazil on vacations, my advise is: Dress as cheap as possible. Use plastic expandable watches. Use ugly plastic googles. Use no-brand blue jeans. Use no-slogans white t-shirts. Use the most cheap shoes you can. Never uses an expensive shoe, even the sportive ones, because people´re killed daily over US$ 50.00 jogger’s shoes. Stay at only the best Hotels your money can pay. To eat, on the other way, try not to be tempted to go to try anything exotic. Just a year ago there was a fatal outbreak in Brazil from sugar cane juice. Blood tests confirmed the presence of Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite that causes Chagas disease, and several persons died. Trypanosoma cruzi is found regularly on several fresh fruits juices, like Açaí, a delicious fruit from Amazon. It seems

that Opossum eat the bug that is the host (vector) of the Trypanosoma cruzi and evacuate near or over the fruits or the cane, and since hygiene is a luxury in some more primitive places, the feces of the Opossum are processed along the raw fruits. In my Town, São Paulo, there are almost as much Japanese food restaurants as in Tokyo or NYC, and the salmon served (imported from Chile) was infested with Diphyllobothrim spp. Last year. Well, even I got it… and it is a misery. Stay away from fresh and raw food in Brazil. Stick to the big fast-food chains like Mac, Hut, and such, and a Brazilian only one (but as good as the international one’s), Habib’s, the largest Arabian fastfood in the World (operating only in Brazil, but with 200+ stores). If you are with an excursion group, feel blessed because you’ll try the delicious Brazilian food, one of the most varied and tasteful you can find anywhere, but you can be trapped by such extremes as a US$ 250.00 bill or a tainted food… I myself, being a son of this land, have been caught on that traps more than once, hence, take care, Ok? Before starting, let me tell you that you could download from the WEB the map from any major City in Brazil (there are more than 5.000 cities and some like my Town, São Paulo, with more than 10 million people). São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro are the most dangerous Towns in the World today, more people being killed in each of these places each year than in any other City of the World, be it in peace or war. Even comparing the number of violent deaths on the Gaza strip and similar strips of intense criminal activity in these places put Brazil several times over… taking the Angolan Civil War (1980-2000) death toll and comparing it to either Rio de Janeiro or São Paulo Towns keep us up on the front over the same time. No one kills more than our criminals. Each year, more than 50.000 Brazilians are killed by professional criminals (not occasional killers nor accidental shootings or so). Try remember how many Americans died in all that long years of the Viet-Nam War and you´ll get the point. Brazis IS dangerous – but you can get in, get out, and stay alive and well. I hope to help you in doing so. Hence, let’s take a look upon the dangerous things the tourist may find in Brazil, and to be as unemotional as I can be when talking’ bout my homeland, they’re listed in an alphabetic order. - BEACHS: Brazil’s has some of the most attractive beaches in all the World, and they are mostly very secure, except all the one´s on Rio de Janeiro City and State and that is on São Paulo State sea shores (Santos, Guarujá, Itanhaém, São Sebastião, Ubatuba, Peruibe, Ilhabela, Caraguatatuba, Maresias, Barra do Sahi, Praia Grande, São Vicente, among many others). There, one’s can be a victim of a mass attack or, on the most desert places at the night, be raped and even killed. Men and women alike have been raped and/or sodomized, regardless of age, race, or appearance, on these place, more than once. Go the the beaches on the North and Northeastern States (Bahia, Ceará, Rio Grande do Norte, Alagoas, Pernambuco, etc.) or on South (Santa Catarina) – they are amazing and much, much more secure – some of the most beautiful ones in all the World, with a sea as fascinating as the Caribean one) – they are amazing and much, much more safe! And the seafood is fresh, cheap, and fantastic! - BEING ARRESTED BY THE POLICE: Never react. Brazilin COPs face death everyday, and a stressed COP may

think they saw you draw a knife or a gun and them you get a .40 S&W slug on the brain and return to home on a black bag. A COP may arrest you, but he (or she) must leave you at the Police Department (“Distrito Policial“ or “Delegacia“), and there the Deputy (“Delegado“), this one the real Authority who'll talk to you or officially arrest you - 'till there you are only "detained", not really arrested. The "Delegado" tis someone a B.A. Degree in Law, and only he/she can clear the things. And don´t think that just because you are an American citizen, with a passport, you´ll never face it. It´s just a case of being at the wrong place at the wrong time. Some of our COPs can not understand what is a foreign passport or a counterfeit. Brazilin COPs face death hourly, hundreds are killed yearly, and iIf the things get sour, you have the right to a telephone call, so call the U.S.Consulate for help - but be very polite, else you can even be beaten with a club. But if you get busted for carrying weapons or drugs, well, better seek advise with the Deputy on an Attorney and be as polite as you can be, because you may face a hard and long time on the wrong side of an iron-bars cage of 10“x10“ with 30 or more inmates. In this case, I just can wish you good luck! You’ll need plenty of it… - BEVERAGES: There are plenty, alcoholic and non-alcoholic, and almost all very tasteful. If you drink alcoholic beverages, you may want to try the “Cachaça“ or “Pinga“ (two names for the same beverage), but ask for the best, most expensive ones. These can be new or old, and the taste is very different, but do not drink that ones with a cheap stamp glued over the bottle and with an snap-cap over the mouth, because these was samples of these cheap varieties mixed-ups with things ranging from urine thru methanol! There is the classic Brazilian cocktail, called “ Batida“, done with the “Pinga“ (wich tastes strong) or with Vodka (Brazilian Vodka, not bad, and with weak taste), a mix of fruits, sugar, and ice. If the place (Hotel, Restaurant) is nice, try it. But don’t try too much, or you’ll get drunk soon. The non-alcoholic beverages worth a try are the “Guaraná“ (either as a gasoseous refrigerant that sells more than all the Cola beverages here) or as a powder (but be sure it is of good quality – buy it at a Supermarket, never at the Streets), the “Caldo de Cana“ (Sugar Cane Juice), either moaned at the time (stay away from it) or the safe “powdered“ (you buy it at Supermarkets), and “Água de Côco“ (CocoNut Water), either from the raw Nut (stay away from it, too), or from the secure “long-life“ little boxes (buy at Supermarkets, too). Only buy food, beverages, etc, only at such big Supermarkets like WalMart, Carrefour, Extra, Pão de Açucar, Barateiro, or at the big Shopping Centers (Shopping Malls) – but NEVER at the Streets. Beware of Honey, too. Outside the big Supermarkets, it can be tainted. At the streets, it is tainted all the time. Honey with Botulinum is a bad combo… - CABS: Never takes a CAB on the Streets. Take the CAB at the official stopping point at the airport (ask someone there about the place and the CAB’s color, it changes from City to City). Ask the Hotel attendants at the reception (not on the doors) to get a CAB. Try to get a RADIO-TAXI telephone (CAB by Radio, you call by phone from any place), to call in an emergency. Ask politely the CAB driver to wait for you or to

get you after the time you’ll spend on your destiny. Try to be generous on your “bribe“, but not “over generous“. Here, “bribery is the international language“ and 10% is the rule (don’t try to do not pay it unless you’re a real scrooge – people live not only on they miserable salary but on these “bribes“ too), 15% is fine, 20% is good, 30% gets you anything (a place in front of anyone’s else, etc). Get it? Bribes here are not bribes in the same sense they are seen in USA – but NEVER try to bribe a Law Officer, or you can get in real trouble!!! That old image of the “Ugly American“ or the “Gringo who thinks can buy anything or anyone“ can cost you an arm and a leg. Be warned! - CARNIVAL ESSAYS: Carnival is like a Hollywood movie near and alive in Brazil – it’s a fantastic spectacle! If you came not on the Carnival time, almost every week there is the essays at the Samba Schools (“Escolas de Samba“). Unless you are among an excursion, stays out! There you’ll cross the path of such fine people as gangsters, drug lords, hit men, mafia bosses, and all their lower ranks ilk. A blink of an eye to a beautiful girl dancing almost naked on your front can mean you’ll be killed at the spot, but before you’ll can even be tortured and maimed. Once dead, you’ll be dismembered and burned to ashes. It happens every week to Brazilians, exactly this way – imagine to a foreigner. STAY OUT!!! - CEMETERIES: People are burglarized, raped, even killed inside cemeteries. Stay out of them. - CORRUPT COPS: If you have the sheer bad luck of crossing one’s path, try to memorize his feature’s, the name on his badge, and do all he demands. Later, complain to the U.S. Consul on the City. Else you can have the bad luck to find the same COP on the Police Department you seek to complaint. I repeat, in this case, complain only to your Consul, no one else. Or it may cost your life. - CREDIT CARD SCAMS: Brazil’s perhaps the World champion on frauds & scams with Credit Cards. Use yours only at “nice places“, places you feel are using your Credit Card “on your eyes“ and on the electronic machines – the old machines, that one’s using a carbonated copy, that need that the operator push a sweep over the card, is the most useful for making a copy of your Credit Card in minutes. Be warned! As almost anyone in Brazil accepts Credit Cards as payments today (although VISA is the most accepted, followed very close by MasterCard, them Diner’s, and fewer than 10% of the market accepts AMEX – American Express, and no one, to my knowledge, accepts EuroCards or Discover), Credit Cards are used in 80% in all sales or services payments here – but beware of the “face“ of the place and it’s workers. In doubt, go to other places. Anyway, the best route is the same, that is, go shopping at big Supermarkets or Shopping Centers, eat at the largest Fast-Food chains, and so on. You can even pay a CAB using your Credit Card, here, but, hey, I´ll never do it myself…

- CRIMINALS: Forget the stereotype “black or latino, dressed in rags, young, ugly, poor, stricken by misery and famine, barefooted“ – it is very far from the reality. Criminals, here, who make a tourist’s life dangerous, is a professional who can tell you, among a cup of tea and a cookie, that “when he enter a bank, armed with an assault rifle, firing in full-auto, along five or six fellow criminals, he is only there working, only taking care of his own business, doing his part to feed his family, just that“. This guy, or girl, can be from any age (I knew personally several ones ranging from 7 to 80 who are criminals by choice and tell they are professionals of the crime, that crime is their profession), from any social class (one famous gangster leader and bank assault planner was one of the most famous and prominent plastic surgeons of Brazil – and did his two jobs at the same time until being caught!), can be as dressed as anyone, can be from any race, or a mix of as many as possible (and here it is common, to be a mixed-up of several races, white, black, red, yellow), so, do not be a fool – fear anyone who comes near you without a legitimate need. Don’t show you feel fear, but look into the person’s face in a way you can remember later if it’s needed. Do not look weak, try to look strong. Try to not look menacing, but not look like you fear him (her). Try to keep the distance. Go to the other side of the Street, the opposite side of the bar, show that you notice the person’s intent. Let me be frank, we here in Brazil are into the deepest economical and social crisis ever, and if anyone comes near you, unless you are a Hollywood Star, that person wants something from you – and in general that “something“ is much more than “it“ is worth. Sorry, no one’ll close on you because of your looks, no one here is educated enough to know how many hours by plane it takes to go from Brazil to USA, nor that NYC and LA are not as close as São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro (less than 300 miles), hence, when anyone is too much close, keep your distance. It may be bad for your Ego, but it’ll good to your body. And are all these persons potential criminals? They may be the most dangerous types, the “aspiring criminals“, desperate people hoping to be called “to duty“ as “soldiers“ on the organized crime structure that now is like a giant spider-web, linking terrorists, guerrillas, smugglers, and professional criminals, from all branches of the Mafia-types organizations operating in Brazil plus their "friends" from the Colombian FARC, making a real “parallel power“ but, sometimes, really more powerful than the real Government, and it seems much more organized. These aspiring criminals are the one’s who, once inside a criminal organization, receives a salary to do anything they are commanded to do – carry drugs on their bodies, go armed into a jail to rescue an inmate, kill anyone (the Brazilian-version of the “Hit-Men“), anything. But they first must proof they are useful on the first place – and finding someone that can be burglarized in “US$“ and them held hostage for a month to be released on the payment of a ransom, well, this is very attractive to them! Hence, beware! Even if you do not wear that colored-flowers stamped shirts, large hats, and a camera on the neck, you may think you does not look like a foreigner – but the smart guy eager to be a petty gangster may think the other way. Foreigners who go to singles bars, to gays houses, to swing houses, to prostitution houses, to clubbers encounters (where tattoed & pierced people meet), or to a rave parties, are at the most risk, but even at the lobby of a 5-Stars Hotel a stranger closing on you is risky. Hence, keep stranger at bay. If it is really needed, be heavy, but do all you can to

keep the distance secure among you and any strange. I live here, I’m built like a football player, I’m always armed with more than two types of weapons, and I do it everyday. Hence, I think it is wise to you do the same. - DRUGS: I don’t mind if you like drugs or no, or if you take them or not. I do not take them, but it is up to me. I was, for a little time, partner, and for a long time, friend, to Brazilian Rock’n’Roll King, Raul Seixas, with whow I composed a few songs (including one contemplated with a “Golden Record“ an another, with English-language lyrics, called “ANGEL“). And he was also the “King of Drugs“. No, I’m not telling you anything outside this topic… it’s about my way of dealing with people’s way of using their own bodies. Hence, as I tell above, if anyone use drugs, or not, it’s really not my business. But if you think of using them in Brazil, there are a few things you should think on before, because you may conclude it’s not worth. Brazil’s Pot is of lesser quality, dried by the smugglers pissing over the blocks and them powdering brow sugar (here produced in a primitive process that uses Mercury, among other nasty things), and the potheads here smoke it and say that “the best pot stinks like piss“… Cocaine here is less than 5% in purity, being cut with such things as sucrose, lactose, powdered marble, talc, powdered canphor, powdered naphthalene, and anything ranging from grey to white in color and cheap enough, hence the high number of accidental deaths involving Coke addicts here that aren’t victims of O.D’s… Heroin’s here is the same 5% and mixed with all the cheap dirty you can imagine… LSD or “Acid“ (as it is called here) is almost all the time 100% contaminated Methamphetamines and costs US$ 50.00 for a piece of dirty paper… Ecstasy, here, in general is genuine “E“, but so much handled as becoming unintentionally contaminated by anything we can suspect (hands, pockets, purses, toilets, you name it), but it costs US$ 100.00 a pill even in that conditions… Downers and Methamphetamines are cheap and easy to find here, but are in general contaminated by only God know what… and if all that fun is not enough for you, you hardcore, the Police here LOVES to bust a “Gringo“ who came from the “rich nations“ to corrupt and degenerate our poor innocent youngster… and at last, but not the least, you know anyone who sell drugs do so not for “love for the art“ but for a kind of profit, be it in money, drugs, prestige with the Drug Lord, etc. That person who is know your best friend from South of the Border may want to sell that “wealthy gringo“ to his boss, and may God bless your poor soul! My advise is simple – while in Brazil, stay “stoned-free“, please. - FISHING: Brazil has some complex, strange Laws concerning amateur fishing and unless you have the advise of someone who is knowledgeable on them, skip fishing. There are the commercial fishing parks, where anyone can come, pay a tax, fish all day long, catch a fish and let it go, an so and so. But it is not really an adventure, and it may become expensive at the end. At last, never go to these far places alone, go in groups, because some two-legged predator can find a lone tourist an easy prey. - FUNK PARTIES - “BAILES FUNK“: They are promoted by the rich and powerful Drug Lords to entertain the

poor youngsters that live on the region they “own“. These parties have plenty of free sex shows, sex for free (for all tastes), free beverages, free drugs, and lots of criminals. Hence, stay out of these places at all costs! No sane person living in Brazil’ll ever go to one. A foreigner going to one is asking for big trouble. - GANG ATTACKS: Gangs here are armed to the teeth with assault weapons no civilian in Brazil (nor in USA) can have. They use full-auto Assault-Rifles, Submachineguns, Machinepistols, Hand-Grenades, even Light-Machineguns and Grenade-Launchers. Chances are very small of being attacked by these gangsters, but if you are in Rio de Janeiro, try to avoid crossing at night the freeways know as “Linha Vermelha“ (Red Line) and “Linha Amarela“ (Yellow Line), because these stripes of land are the borders of rivaling headquarters of gangs of Drug Lords, hence, twice a week, at least, they start a shootout that last for the all the night ´till the morning comes. And anyone unfortunate enough to be crossing the path of thousands of 7.62x51, 7.62x39, 5.56x45 and other similar hi-powered full-auto weapons and hand grenades may find himself into a dead-end. - GUERRILLAS: The guerrillas now operating in Brazil are the Narco-Guerillas, but be open to news because the Colombian FARC are coming with an alarming frequency crossing our borders, and on the triple-frontier (BrazilParaguay-Argentina) the number of suspects of involvements in Moslem extremism-terrorism is high, and there are strong proofs that some Moslem terror leaders linked to Al-Qaeda and others come and go once or twice, probably to laundry dirty money. Be alert to news. A short-wave radio is worth it’s weight in gold to any traveler, in my humble opinion. - GUNS: Our Laws towards guns ownerships are now some of the most draconians in al the World. Do not even think on buy a gun here, because you can buy any Brazilian gun, legally, in USA, much cheaper than in Brazil, and in calibers we never had. Now, under these newer Laws, one’s can keep his guns, but can not buy any more. If you think on buying a gun, illegal an so, only for your protection, on the time you’ll spend here, forget it – you are risking going to jail for 6 years. Even “Peper Spray” and “Air-Taser” weapons are forbidden for civilians here. Carrying any firearm or even these lesslethal weapons can throw you in jail for up to 8 years. And a Brazilian jail is the real stinky hellhole. - HOMELESS: In general, they are inoffensive, begging for coins, because they only want to stay drunk or high Crack stones. Anyway, stay away from them. Just raise a hand in a gesture saying NO and go away. Almost anyone does that. Begging is a job here. If you feel you really need to do charity, there are Churches and Temples from every Religion in Brazil, major and minor. Search on the WEB to find the nearest, go there and do what you want – but do not give money to these beggars. Sometimes I find one who really is into a miserable condition (very rare, no one died by famine on Brazil like is common in India or some places of Africa) – in that rare cases, I buy a bread and a soft drink and give to that beggar. But I NEVER give money, else he’ll spend it in Crack stones… and them I’ll be helping him going even more down!

- HUNTING: Hunting was banned in Brazil from several years, be it professional or amateurish hunting. I’m a member of SCI – Safari Club International, and I feel frustrated by this condition, but as an Attorney I know the Law punishes harder whom kills an Armadillo (or a Jaguar, or an Opossum) than it does to one who kills a human being. Serious. Not always "on the paper", but always on the practice. Hunting “opens“ once a year only on the Rio Grande do Sul State, but only for some species that are not up to the international sporting levels, and no one on the level to be taken as a trophy (they are hunted to be eaten, nothing more). There are very few Hunting Farms (“Fazendas de Caça“) in Brazil, but there you’ll find only imported animals. The anti-gunners are doing all they can to ban Hunting in Brazil. As your advisor, except if you really want to say “I have hunted in Brazil“, skip it from your list, because it is too much expensive to the results you can get. The danger is only this – you can spend more to kill a boar and two pigeons than to kill all Big-Five in Africa. Crossing the borders one can have plenty of hunting species - in Argentine, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Bolivia. Sorry for you, for me, and for Brazil. - JUNGLES: There are a few very good and expensive Hotels in the Amazonian Jungle (Amazonas State), and some in the Pantanal de Mato Grosso (Mato Grosso State and Mato Grosso do Sul State). They are worth the expense. Besides it, forget going to the Jungles, crossing it on a boat, etc. There are lots of criminals out there and your body’ll never be found. - KIDNAPINGS: Here, people are kidnapped and held at gunpoint by two or more bullies for a night to empty all the funds on his (or her) Credit Card (be it on ATM machines, that can be found on every corner of the largest Towns), or on the Shopping Centers or other Stores, and once the credit is empty, the criminals kill the victim. Or, if they found the hostage has someone who care enough for his (or her) life, and that they can ask for at least US$ 1,000.00, they can held such person for months and, upon receiving the ransom, they kill the hostage. These criminals have been doing it for years, and only the very wealthy, who pay ransoms sums of US$ 5,000,000.00 (at least 100 such rich persons kidnapped over the last ten years in Brazil), are released alive and into one-piece. The lesser guy is just a funny way to make money to the cruel criminals from Brazil. In general, after receiving the ransom, they “train“ their sword-skills into the hostage still alive and, once bored, they burn the poor victim (still alive, but dismembered by sword strikes) on caves on the “morros“ they call “microwave-owen“ (search on the WEB for “Tim Lopes“, a Brazilian journalist who suffered this ordeal, and when his bones’re found, bones of hundreds of persons who received similar tortures’re founded along). What do do to do not be kidnapped – do not go alone anywhere! Go only in groups. Do not show you have plenty of Credit Cards. Carry one Credit Card at each different pocket. Look before showing your Credit Card if there is anyone looking at you and at what are you doing. Be paranoid – it’s better than be kidnapped… - MASS ATTACKS: These are show on the TV News all over the World – a bunch of semi-

naked youngsters punching and kicking a hopeless tourist on a beach full of people. There is not much you can do, except do your best do protect your face, neck front and back, and groin. I hope if you go to a beach, you go without anything worth much money or so. Hence, let the petty muggers get what they want, because, among other things, even if you are a high-grade Black-Belt in some Martial Art and can kill all the little bastards in less time than late Michael Echanis’ll do, remember Brazil today is ruled by leftists, and that Brazilian Government have an human rights politics that can get you jailed for kicking the ass of a poor juvenile… Get it? - MEDICAL EMERGENCIES: Take a CAB (see the rules for it) or in a real emergency ask the Police to take you to the BEST PRIVATE HOSPITAL – never go to a public hospital! It’ll cost you more than an arm and a leg, but in our largest Towns, the best Private (“Hospitais Particulares“) Hospitals are so good as the best Hospitals in USA, Japan, or Occidental Europe – and even more expensive. But no emergency is big enough for the largest Private Hospitals here, like, in my Town (São Paulo), the best one´s I know (from the inside): Sirio-Libanês, Albert Einstein, Nove de Julho, Santa Catarina, Nove de Julho, and INCOR – Instituto do Coração. The only exception to this rule in my Town, if you don’t have money at hand and need first-class medical attention, is the Hospital das Clínicas, one of the largest medical complexes in the World – but be prepared to stay a long time waiting for your time to enter on the Doctor’s room, because 50% of all the really grave emergencies in this 10 million + people is directed to there. - MEDICINE: If you need to buy any medicine, buy only at the largest drugstores, and even so look for the expiration date on the medicine’s case or box. This way you avoid being poisoned by a several years old medicine, and avoid taking a fake pill made with lactose, sucrose, or any other placebo. Twice a month a drugstore is busted doing some crime – and these things are CRIMES here. Take care. - ODONTOLOGICAL EMERGENCIES: There are several 24-hours/7-days-a-week “Clínicas Odontológicas“ and, in general, our dentists are as good as the best ones in USA or Europe, and also as expensive as these. For emergencies, do not go to one appointed by a CAB driver, a Hotel waitress, etc., except if someone at U.S. Consulate can appoint one of his personal use – otherwise, go to these emergency-specialized professionals. - ORGANIZED CRIME: Since the end of the Military rulership (Ditactorship to some) in 1985 (from 1964), the Organized Crime “take foot“ on Brazil. Now, all the Organized Crime branches are “working“ in Brazil. And I mean ALL because it is true. The American “Cosa Nostra“, the Sicilian “Mafia“, the Napolaetanian “Camorra“, the Calabrian “N’Drangheta“, the French “Corsican Union“, the Japanese “Yakusa“, the Chinese “Triad“, the Russian “Grey Wolves“, the Nigerian “Ogbony“, the final-consumer international but Italian-based “SCU - Sacra Corona Unita“, the all-Brazilian “CV - Comando Vermelho“ and “PCC - Primeiro Comando da

Capital“, all them, linked like a big family, all working together to dominate Brazil and keep Brazilian's on it’s knees. And they are making a pretty good job. Stay away from all places you know the “Cosa Nostra“ may be involved if it was USA – because if it is in Brazil, you can bet any of the above “Mafias“ is ruling the game. From Cock-Fights to Whorehouses, they are there. So, be smart, and stay away. - PEOPLE WHO SEEL THINGS ON THE TRAFFIC STOPS: They are only trying to feed their families, but they only sell things that are the result of one of the biggest games of the organized crime here – load robbery. If you buy from a pencil to a miniature car, be sure you are buying stolen goodies. Sorry, Brazil is not a Paradise. My advise is – do not buy ANYTHING on the traffic stops. - PEOPLE WHO SELL THINGS ON THE STREETS: I can say the same here over people that sell things on the streets, using small tables, as I said before on people who sell things on traffic stops. They sell illegal copies of CDs and DVDs, Pocket Computers, electronics, telephones, anything. Of course, these things are stolen cargo. My advise once more is to not buy anything on the Strets. - PROSTITUTION: We are on a deep economical, social, and moral crisis, hence, prostitution is the final option to a host of people, men and women, young and old, educated or not. All races, all colors, married, singles, mothers, fathers, they need money, they like to make sex, and they find a “job“. The problem is – many of them are underaged. STAY OUT! If you are caught having intercourse or maybe even KISSING THE LIPS of someone under 18 years old, you´re in bad trouble, throw in jail, show on TV as the “ugly pedophile Gringo“ and expect to have your Consul says to your family back in USA to forget you… Get it? If you really want to have sex with a “native Brazilian“, and is “eager“ to pay for it, my advise is – always use a first quality (most expensive) condom. Because a prostitute (here called “Acompanhante“ be it man or woman or “Garota de Programa“ if a girl or “Garoto de Programa“ if a boy and “Travesti“ if a transsexual or Drag-Queen), may ask you to place your condom (here called “camisinha“, meaning a little shirt…), but if you say you’ll pay twice for the “job“, the sex professional may let you do what you want without a condom. Very, very risky, since almost all prostitutes, men and women alike, are bisexual, at least professionally, and they all “work with customers“ be them men, women, couples, or a combination… several prostitutes, specialy the hardcore ones, are drug addicts, and at least 30% are HIV positive. Stay away from the Whorehouses… stay away from the whores who work on the Streets… stay away from the whores who advertise on the newspapers or magazines… stay away from prostitutes show on sites on the WEB that you must “contact“ an “agent“ who’ll introduce the girl or boy or Drag-Queen to you… all these are under the rulership of the MAFIAS. If you really need and want to have sex and want it so much you’ll spend money with it (as I told you earlier, your life style is NOT my business), I advise you to seek on the WEB for the sites of “Acompanhantes“ that show that sex professionals photos and a cellular phone number to call and talk directly to him or her. You can even ask someone on the Hotel to do it for you, to

“call for me this person and ask to came here at that hour“ – for a small bribe, it is so common to a man or a woman do you such a favor here in Brazil that once the Hotel worker left your room he/she´ll forget it. Really, it’s not important in Brazil, so common it is. A “first-class“ sex professional may ask some US$ 100.00 plus the CAB to your place – do not go to another’s place. In your place, if it’s a first-rate one, you are under complete surveillance all time. Better be viewed as a fornicator than as a corpse. If paying for sex is your game, you’ll not get disappointed – Brazilian sex professionals seems to be among the best in the World. So, have fun! - RIOTS: Stays out, because Riot Police here goes over a Riot to dissolve it by force, and you can be badly hurt and even be arrested. Even if you feel sympathy for the cause, do not forget that “a Bull outside it’s corral is simple a Cow“… you are here to stay a short time and be back in one piece, right? Try to think this way all the time… - RIVERS: They are beautiful, full of fishes, but do not be tempted to try to cross one alone by any means, because there are many criminals specialized in attacking single voyagers found along rivers. Go only in groups or excursions. - SLUMS – “FAVELAS” – “MORROS”: All the World hears tales of hate and love, of poverty, of famine, of crime, of people who came from this sea of mud and became famous. Forget all that bullshit. These places are ruled by the Drug Lords, no one can place a foot there without a prior authorization (Michael Jackson asked, and get, that permission, to film a clip on one of these places on Rio de Janeiro, years ago – and the soldiers of the Drug Lord done his security as his bodyguards. Serious!). Do not get tempted to go there, specially you, American citizen, don’t matter if you is white, black, latino, red, or yellow – they, the Drug Lords, are the “Brazilian arm“ of the Colombian FARC, they distribute their Cocaine over Brazil, and any American is suspicious as Hell to them. If you want to go back to USA alive, stay away from these places! - STRANGERS WHO CALL YOU ON THE STREETS: Do not reply. If you feel intimidated, ask for the help of a COP. Else, it can be the start of any of the nightmares I pictured above. I, being an “insider“, do this way. - TERRORISTS: Today, I can say about Terrorists what I’ve said about Guerrillas, but it can change soon. Anyway, what we, Brazilians, call “common criminal“, you Americans may call a Terrorist – because our criminals use all the tactics of the terrorists, excepts the suicidebomber - yet. - WATER: Drink only water you buy in bottles at the largest Supermarkets, or at good Restaurants or Fast-Food chains (but ask that the bottle be opened on your front). The best Brazilian brand is “São Lourenço“, a brand whose owner is French Perrier. Never drink water from any tap,

source, pecks, river, beach, stream, lake, lagoon, nor a glass anyone brings you. Be paranoid, but stay healthy. Water is very dangerous in some places of Brazil and can kill. In my house (I live in Downtown), even to cook, we use bottled water – what more can I say? I hope I did not scary you towards Brazil, because I live here, and I love my land, a really beautiful one. I just tried to be as sincere as possible when showing you the dangers you may face here. The good things – and there are many more than dangers – you can find for yourself over thousands of sites over the WEB! If you ever came to Brazil, I hope you like my land, and go back to USA in complete safety. I wish all the readers the best luck! Mad Abe. Contents COPyright (c) 2006 Modern Survival Magazine

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