“God Forgives” Brazilian Goalkeeper Who Killed his Girlfriend

Bruno Fernandes de Souza

Rio de Janeiro: Brazilian goalkeeper Bruno Fernandes de Souza was signed by Boa Esporte for two years and it drew outcry from women’s rights groups and caused several sponsors to withdraw funding from the club. The star goalkeeper was arrested back in 2010 because of homicide, kidnapping and hiding the body of former model Eliza Samudio. He was sentenced to 22 years in prison in 2013 for his involvement in the murder of his ex-girlfriend Eliza. Bruno and Eliza were engaged in a paternity dispute over a child they conceived in 2009, while Bruno was still married. A group of Bruno’s friends kidnapped the young woman, tortured her, and fed her dismembered body to dogs because Eliza started to demand child support payments. The body was never found.

In his first major interview since being released from prison on a technicality while his lawyers prepare an appeal, Bruno Fernandes de Souza said: “What happened, happened. I made a mistake, a serious one, but mistakes happens in life — I’m not a bad guy.” “People tried to bury my dream because of one mistake, but I asked God for forgiveness, so I’m carrying on with my career, dude,” he said, according to the Guardian.

Boa Esporte's president, Rone Moraes da Costa, says the team isn't committing any crimes by signing the 32-year-old who formerly played for one of Brazil's most famous clubs -- Flamengo -- and was tipped to line up for the national team at the 2014 World Cup on home soil. "Esporte Club was not responsible for the release and freedom of the athlete Bruno," da Costa said, adding that the club was "giving work to those who intend to recover."

Boa Esporte’s main sponsor, Gois & Silva Group, as well as their athletic equipment provider, Kanxa, withdrew funding from the club. A change.org petition, organized by victims group The Movement We Are All Victims United, has protested against Bruno's hiring by Boa Esporte, conveying the message to "all Presidents and Directors of Football Clubs our total disgust that a symbol of DEATH wear a sports shirt." The petition had reached close to 35,000 signatures.

Social media users have also voiced their opinions, especially on Twitter, where one of the users said: "Goalkeeper Bruno, murderer! Boa Esporte, shame is not enough!! In Brazil the inversion of values is absurd!" The question is whether it is enough to “ask God for forgiveness” and to continue with life as if such a horrifying crime had never happened. And also, is any sentence harsh enough to punish the monstrous act like this one?

Photo Credits: Wikimedia / Noticias

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