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The Carandiru massacre (Massacre do Carandiru, Portuguese pronunciation: [mɐˈsakɾi du kɐɾɐ̃dʒiˈɾu]) took place on Friday, 2 October 1992, in Carandiru Penitentiary in São Paulo, Brazil, when military police stormed the facility following a prison riot. The massacre, which left 111 prisoners dead (102 shot by the police; 9 killed by other inmates), is considered a major human rights violation in the history of Brazil.
The massacre was triggered by a prisoner revolt in the prison. The prison guards made little effort to negotiate with the prisoners before the Polícia Militar do Estado de São Paulo stormed the facility, as the prison riot became more difficult for prison guards to control. The resulting casualties were 111 prisoners killed: 102 from gunshots fired by police and nine from stab wounds apparently inflicted by other prisoners before the arrival of the police. None of the sixty-eight police officers were killed. Survivors claimed that the police also fired at inmates who had already surrendered or were trying to hide in their cells.
The commanding officer of the operation, Colonel Ubiratan Guimarães, was initially sentenced to 632 years in prison for his mishandling of the rebellion and subsequent massacre. On 16 February 2006, a Brazilian court voided Guimarães' conviction because of mistrial claims; the court accepted his argument that he was only following orders. Guimarães, who was also a member of the São Paulo state legislature, was assassinated in September 2006.
Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC), one of Brazil's most notorious gangs, is said to have been formed in 1993 as a response to the event. This group is believed to be responsible for the death of José Ismael Pedrosa, director of the prison at the time.
The prison was demolished on 9 December 2002.
In April 2013, 23 policemen involved in the massacre were sentenced to 156 years in prison each for the killing of 13 inmates, whilst in August 2013 a further 25 policemen involved in the massacre were sentenced to 624 years each for the deaths of 52 inmates. In April 2014, a further 15 policemen were sentenced to 48 years. On September 2016, the court declared trial on Carandiru massacre null.