Twenty-five alleged members of a gang of Brazilian bank robbers were killed Sunday in a vast police operation in Minas Gerais state, a police source told AFP.
“There are 25 criminals who have died, and no injuries,” a federal highway police source told AFP.
The operation, carried out in conjunction with the Military Police, took place near the city of Varginha.
Police raided two farms where “members of a criminal organization specializing in robbing banks and ATMs” were preparing attacks on several local bank branches, the source said.
Eighteen of the suspects were killed on the first farm and seven at the second farm, police said.
A large trove of weapons was seized, including rifles and grenades, as well as several stolen vehicles, according to the source.
Police say such gangs often set fire to stolen vehicles to block streets after a robbery and make it harder for police to pursue them.
Brazil has seen an increase in highly planned bank robberies involving heavy weapons, usually in medium-sized cities where escape routes are carefully planned.
In August, a gang in the city of Aracatuba, in Sao Paulo state, spread terror during a robbery involving drones, explosives and the use of hostages as human shields.
Three people died.