United States Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts

05/30/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 05/30/2024 07:21

Brazilian Man Indicted for Visa Fraud and Perjury

Press Release

Brazilian Man Indicted for Visa Fraud and Perjury

Thursday, May 30, 2024
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts
Defendant convicted of murder, attempted murder and physical and mental torture by Brazilian authorities for his involvement in The Slaughter of Curió in 2015

BOSTON - A Brazilian man, residing in Malden, was indicted yesterday for using and possessing a fraudulently obtained visa to enter the United States and lying on his asylum application. Upon applying for a U.S. Visa, the defendant allegedly never disclosed to U.S. Immigration authorities his involvement in the murders of 11 people, mostly teenagers, in Brazil in retaliation for the death of a police officer, an incident known as the The Slaughter of Curió.

Antonio Jose De Abreu Vidal Filho, 30, was indicted on two counts of visa fraud, two counts of perjury and one count of falsifying, concealing and covering up a material fact. Following an initial appearance in federal court in Boston yesterday, De Abreu was ordered detained pending a hearing scheduled for June 5, 2024.

According to the indictment, in April 2014, De Abreu joined the Ceara State Military Police - Brazilian state forces who, under the governor, do first line policing on the street. It is alleged that in the early morning hours of Nov. 12, 2015, numerous Brazilian military police officers employed by the government of the Brazilian state of Ceará, including De Abreu, participated in a mass killing event of primarily young people from the impoverished neighborhoods of Barroso, Messejana, Guajeru, Curió and Lagoa Redonda in the capital of Ceará. The killing was in retaliation for the death of another police officer earlier that evening who was shot and killed in the Lagoa Redonda neighborhood, attempting to defend his wife who was being assaulted. In total, 11 people, mostly teenagers, were murdered and many others seriously injured and tortured. This incident has come to be known as A Chacina do Curió or The Slaughter of Curió or The Curió Massacre. A total of 45 individuals, including De Abreu, were charged by the Brazilian authorities and, on Aug. 31, 2016, De Abreu was arrested and detained by the Brazilian police. He was subsequently released pending trial on May 24, 2017.

According to the indictment, two weeks later, on June 9, 2017, while in Recife, Brazil, De Abreu applied for a United States non-immigrant B2 visitor visa. When asked whether he had ever been arrested or convicted for any offense or crime, De Abreu responded "no." Thereafter, on or about June 21, 2017, the United States Department of State approved De Abreu's Visa Application and issued him the B2 Visa based upon his alleged false representations in the Visa Application. De Abreu used the B2 Visa and travelled to Miami on May 30, 2018.

Between May 30, 2018 through Aug. 14, 2023, as a result of the approval of his Visa Application, De Abreu obtained various state driver's licenses, a social security card, travel documents and authorizations for employment.

On Jan. 29, 2020, De Abreu applied for asylum. It is alleged that De Abreau lied when asked whether he had ever been accused, charged, arrested, detained, interrogated and imprisoned in any country other than the United States. He also allegedly failed to disclose his arrest and detention in Brazil when he applied for adjustment of status with United States Citizenship and Immigration Service.

On June 25, 2023, De Abreu was convicted of 11 counts of murder, three counts of attempted murder and four counts of physical and mental torture in the First Court of Fortaleza, Ceará. That same day, De Abreu was sentenced to 275 years and 11 months in prison and an arrest warrant issued.

On Feb. 9, 2024, De Abreu testified under oath at an immigration hearing conducted by the Immigration Court. At that hearing, De Abreu falsely claimed that he had never lied to immigration officials and that the only reason he had left off important information on immigration documents filed with the United States government was because he had not yet been arrested.

The charge of misuse of visas, permits and other documents provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. The charge of perjury provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. The charge of falsifying, concealing, and covering up a material fact provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.

Acting United States Attorney Joshua S. Levy; Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Olsen for the Justice Department's National Security Division; Michael J. Krol, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in New England; Bradley Parker, Special Agent in Charge of the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, Boston Field Office; and Mathew O'Brien, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Department of State's Diplomatic Security Service, Boston Field Office; and Denis C. Riordan, District Director of the Fraud Detection and National Security Division of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, Boston Field Division made the announcement today. This matter was investigated with the assistance of the United States Interagency Human Rights Violators & War Crimes Center. Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura J. Kaplan of the National Security Unit is prosecuting the case.

The details contained in the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated May 30, 2024