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Shot Brazilian's family demand British justice

The victim's mother Maria Otone de Menezes said: "We are searching for justice."

india Updated: Sep 27, 2005 18:00 IST
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse

The family of a Brazilian who was repeatedly shot in the head by anti-terror police in London arrived in Britain on Tuesday demanding justice and punishment for the police.

The parents of electrician Jean Charles de Menezes, 27, arrived at London's main Heathrow airport accompanied by his brother, his brother's wife, and three young children.

The victim's mother Maria Otone de Menezes said: "We are searching for justice."

Speaking through an interpreter, she said: "I want the police to be punished."

The family were escorted through the west London airport by a clutch of officers from the city's Metropolitan Police.

The force is paying for the family to come to London, where they are expected to be updated on the inquiry into his death.

De Menezes was killed on July 22, a day after a failed attempt to repeat the July 7 attacks that killed 56 people, including four presumed suicide bombers, in blasts on three subway trains and a bus.

Police mistook the Brazilian for a suicide bomber and shot him repeatedly in the head on a train at Stockwell subway station in south London.

The family are expected to visit Stockwell on Wednesday and on Thursday hold talks with the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), which is investigating the incident.

They may also meet Met Police Commissioner Ian Blair, Britain's top police officer, who has defended the shoot-to-kill policy when dealing with suspected suicide bombers.

The family demanded Blair's resignation in August when reports were leaked about details of the IPCC inquiry, leading to cover-up claims.

The trip comes a month after three top Brazilian officials visited London on a fact-finding mission. They concluded that there had not been a police cover-up.

The De Menezes family, who were offered an initial compensation payment of 15,000 pounds (22,100 euros, $26,600), have said they want to see responsible officers jailed.

Blair has conceded that he may resign if heavily criticised by the IPCC report, due before the end of the year.

First Published: Sep 27, 2005 18:00 IST