Guns captured by the police in Rio de Janeiro

Vinícius Cavalcante sent me the below photos of guns captured by the police in Rio de Janeiro during recent operations in the favelas of Vila Cruzeiro and the Complexo do Alemão. Everything from belt-fed machine guns to mortars to AKs, Thompsons and Garands are represented. The drug dealers do not let their colleagues in Columbia or Mexico outdo them.

Click on the photos to enlarge them.

Some readers asked why the Brazilian’s went into the slums with machine guns. I think this is why.
Desert Eagle … something no druglord should be without.
Look at the condition of these grenades.

[ Many thanks to Vinícius for emailing me the photos. ]

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • Rob

    Want to stress test your gun send it to Rio De Genero, only the most reliable guns are seen here -_- holy crap see how rusty those things are, must be from drug dealers from the 40s

  • Nadnerbus

    “The drug dealers do not let their colleagues in Columbia or Mexico outdo them.”

    Bah! I didn’t see any gold plated AK’s with a rooster for the front sight.

  • Joel

    Is the white paint from when the police captured them and marks them as such?

  • Andy from CT

    Lemme guess. They’re also claiming that 90% of them could be traced back to the U.S.?

  • Axel

    Is that a Norwegian AG3 in the bottom pic?!!

  • MacK

    I doubt half the weapons were functional… The tangos in Rio need to step up their game… Amateurs.

    Hope the blues kick the shit outta those dumbasses.

  • Sam

    it could be some kind of gang markings.

  • eurogunner

    Makes me wonder if police captures only junk weapons that they are given away on purpose so that they won’t look for serious hardware.

  • JonMac

    I presume the Vz26s (and FALs, Madsens etc) have been acquired via the Brazilian army somehow. Backdoor sales? Theft?

  • Parrini

    Yes, the white markings are from the police to identify the weapons captured on the operation. Those photos are from the early hours after the police invaded the Alemao Complex. After the police/army/federal forces took the area they found many, many more weapons caches hidden by the bandits because they needed to leave the slum undetected, as civilians. The search continues today, as we discuss this.

  • shinayne

    @Axel: Yes, that seems to be a G3 of some description, but that is a german weapon (HK). Why would it be norwegian?

  • Clodboy

    “Is that a Norwegian AG3 in the bottom pic?!!”

    A number of South American countries, including Colombia and El Salvador, use H&K G3s.
    I’d actually expect G3s to be pretty common on the South American black market, especially after massive weapons shipments from Uncle Sam allowed the Salvadorians to replace their aging G3s with M16s.

  • Pedro

    A little DuraCoat and some of those would be as good as new!

  • Pete Sheppard

    Re: Photo 1— How would *you* feel with the exhaust end of a rocket launcher against your face, and your buddy’s finger on the trigger (OF COURSE it’s unloaded…heh)

  • Chicovsky

    White markings : Made to identify the apprehended guns.

    Rusty guns: Most of those guns were buried, hidden in walls, underground caches and sewers.

    FALs, Madsens and others: They are acquired via Bolivia and Paraguay, not through the Brazilian army. Only minor cases of theft are seen, 1 in a 100.

    Golden guns: Yes, they have it. But those are easy to spot.
    Some pics:,,OI104820-EI306,00-Policiais+apreendem+fuzil+dourado+em+favela+do+Rio.html,,MUL1077145-5606,00-PM+APREENDE+ARMA+DOURADA+EM+OPERACAO+NO+ESTACIO.html

    ******Warning – Graphic********
    The druglord with the uzi, dead:

  • Jim


    These are some of the most impoverished people in the Western hemisphere. I think they aren’t quite so selective about their hardware as we may think.

  • wizemanful

    All from an Arizona gun store, no doubt…

  • H. Cottom

    Notice there are three Bren guns

  • Lance

    These are all Chinese M-4 and AK knock offs the AKs have the Chinese SKS style bayonets.

  • Dakota

    That collection has WWII relics all the way up to modern firepower, all I can say is I wish they were mine.

  • 54Bravo

    I’d give that M1928A1 a good home! That’s my favorite version of the Thompson-accepts both stick mags AND the 50/100 round drums. It’s at the top of my yet-to-shoot, gun list.

  • Martin (M)

    I wonder if the police kept all the best bits for themselves and offered up the leftover crap as bandit weapons. From the videos and pictures we’ve been seeing on the blog, it seems some of them could use better equipment.

  • Variable

    I´ve seen a spanish Cetme Model L (Light) in the last pic. I´m sure is a Cetme for the green buttstock

  • Anders

    In the second photo, is there a .50Mg (M2/DShK) in the background?
    Could anyone identify it?
    Easy to see why the police went in so heavily armed.

  • @Anders,

    The tripod doesn’t look large enough to be the M3 tripod used on the M2 but the receiver looks bigger than a M1919.

  • Luiz

    These M4s are not (at least not all)chinese. I’ve seen brand new bushmasters being apprehendend in my state (Paraná). It is southern Brazil, and crime is less intense here. By the way, i have also seen pictures (unrelated to this operation) of a Steyr AUG in the hands of one of those dumbasses.

    And about the .50 cal, well, they recently shot down an armored Huey of the BOPE. And also, i heard that as the police started the invasion, the drug dealers have called to a PD and said: “There is a 50 cal waiting for you here”.

  • Sigivald

    As Cotton said, the Brens surprised me – mostly because I can’t imagine how they got there in that quantity.

    Seized by Argentina during the Falklands war?

    Sold off by Belize?

    Just smuggled in from India where they still make them?

  • João G. Cavalcanti

    Most of those guns were not used anymore by the dealers… They scaped with the better stuff.

  • Jon H

    Heh. Notice the crossbow in the second-to-last photo, just above the box.

  • Brandon

    So if 90% of those came from us, can we have some of them back?

  • Dutch

    Looking at the tripod, I think it looks more like a FN MAG (used by the Brazil Army) and you can also see some rounds hanging next to the weapon and those looks to my like 7.62mm.

    But what do you think about the weapon left on the bottom of
    photo 5 and 6?
    It looks like a MK19!!