5 Brazilian Serial Killers with More Than 10 Victims

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The five Brazilian serial killers you’ll read about here have 150 victims between them, each having claimed more than 10 victims each.

South America is no stranger to serial killers, with every country on the continent falling foul of at least one. But Brazil stands far above the rest.

Sailson José das Gracas: The Monster of Corumbá

Victims: 43

5 Brazilian Serial Killers with More Than 10 Victims

Das Gracas was arrested in 2014 after stabbing a woman to death in the Rio de Janeiro suburb of Nova Iguacu. He immediately confessed to killing another 42 people since 2005.

His victims included 37 women, three men and a two-year-old girl, and he either stabbed or strangled them to death. Police were sceptical of his claims until they began connecting victims to him.

When police investigated further, they discovered das Gracas was obsessed with killing white women. He would stalk them in the weeks prior to their murders to find the perfect moment to attack.

Interestingly, psychiatrists who interviewed das Gracas after his arrest learned that killing had a calming effect on him. After a murder, he would relax for a couple of months until he needed to ‘relax’ himself again.

He admitted to killing the young girl to stop himself being discovered in a victim’s house. Das Gracas confessed to 43 murders and claimed his first victim when he was just 17.

Das Gracas was sentenced in 2018 and again in 2021 for some of the murders. He remains in prison awaiting further trials. His arrest came just two months after Brazilian police arrested the next serial killer on our list!

Tiago Henrique Gomes da Rocha

Victims: 39

Brazilian serial killers

Between 2011 and 2014, former security guard da Rocha went on a serial killing rampage and claimed 39 victims. He was arrested just two months before das Gracas, in Goiânia, in the state of Goiás.

Da Rocha had an unusual MO, in that he would approach many of his victims on a motorbike and shout ‘robbery’ at the top of his voice before shooting them when they turned around.

He didn’t take anything from his victims and left them on the streets where he killed them. His victims of choice were homeless people, sex workers, and gay men, and they were selected at random.

Police were aware of the so-named ‘Motorcycle Killer’ but due to the randomness of the attacks, they didn’t have much to go on. That was until he claimed his last victim, 14-year-old Ana Lidia Gomes, who was shot dead as she stepped out her front door.

Ana’s death caused police to step up their investigation and das Gracas was arrested in October 2014 after a failed attempt at killing another victim.

Upon his arrest, he attempted to take his own life but when it failed, he asked police if he was allowed to kill other prisoners. As far as Brazilian serial killers go, das Gracas was one of the most disturbed, and blamed the murders on being abused as a child.

By 2021, das Gracas had been convicted of six murders with a total sentence of 142 years. He is listed as a defendant in another 31 cases, with police suspecting he had killed more than the 39 he claimed.

Francisco de Assis Pereira: The Park Maniac

Victims: 11

Francisco de Assis Pereira: The Park Maniac

Between 1997 and 1998, the city of São Paulo was living in fear of a serial killer known only as The Park Maniac. In July 1998 alone, the bodies of four young women were found at a nature reserve on the outskirts of the city.

Each of the women were found naked and face down on the ground. All had been strangled to death using a ligature, which became Francisco’s MO.

Semen was found on one of the victims but due to the early days of DNA testing, the evidence was mishandled by Brazilian police and couldn’t be used.

Due to the high profile of the case, a number of women and sex workers went to police and told them of a man who they believed was the killer.

Francisco was arrested in August 1998 based on the women’s statements. Along with the evidence of a local fisherman, who claimed to have seen Francisco with one of the dead women.

His victims were aged between 18 and 24, and he would lure them into the nature reserve by posing as a fashion photographer. He claimed if he hadn’t been caught by the end of 1998, that he would begin eating his victims.

He told jurors at his trial that he had two sides and was possessed by an evil force. Francisco was sentenced to a total of 268 years but could be released in 2028 due to a maximum 30-year period set by Brazilian law.

People across Brazil still look at Francisco as one of the worst Brazilian serial killers.

Marcelo Costa de Andrade: The Vampire of Niterói

Victims: 14

Marcelo Costa de Andrade: The Vampire of Niterói 5 Brazilian Serial Killers with More Than 10 Victims

Over an eight-month period from April to December 1991, de Andrade raped and killed at least 14 young boys between the ages of six and 13.

He drank the blood of his victims so that he could become as youthful as they were. He strangled them to death before slicing one of their arteries and drinking direct from the body.

By the age of 14, de Andrade was a sex worker and claimed he was abused heavily as a child while growing up in the slums of Rio. He committed his first crime at the age of 17, when he tried to rape a ten-year-old boy.

In December 1991, de Andrade claimed he fell in love with a ten-year-old boy who had a six-year-old brother with him. De Andrade killed the younger boy and spent the night with the ten-year-old.

The next day, the boy ran to the police, and de Andrade was arrested. It was only then that police discovered he had killed another 13 boys in the months prior.

Vampirism is rare in Brazilian serial killers, but de Andrade became known as the Vampire of Niterói due to his craving for blood. Niterói is a city to the southeast of Rio connected by a bridge.

De Andrade was committed to a psychiatric hospital as he was found unfit to stand trial but escaped in 1997. He was captured soon after and re-committed indefinitely.

Francisco das Chagas: The Mechanic

Victims: 42

Francisco das Chagas: The Mechanic

One of the most infamous Brazilian serial killers is former mechanic, Francisco das Chagas Rodrigues de Brito. He raped and killed at least 30 children in the regions of Maranhão and Pará from 1989 to 2003.

He was suspected of killing at least 42 but investigators at the time believed he could have killed more. He believed he was exacting revenge because he was abused as a child and wanted others to feel his pain.

Chagas claimed he knew he was killing children but had no memory of the intricacies of the murders and couldn’t even explain where he had been. He would rape and then castrate his victims, before burying them in shallow graves.

He was arrested in 2004 and initially charged with the murders of two young boys who were found buried beneath the floor of his shack, in a shanty town near to Sao Jose do Ribamar.

He was known as The Mechanic due to his work with cars and also in the mechanical way he would castrate his victims.

“Something was guiding me, directing me. It was like a voice in my head. And it was that thing – the voice – that determined what happened. Sometimes I’m revolted by what I did, but you must understand that something was using me to do this. Good people will understand that.”

Chagas, in a 2004 interview with the BBC.

The trial of Chagas was held in the auditorium of a local club in Sao Jose de Ribamar, because the courtroom wasn’t big enough to hold the hundreds of victims’ relatives. He was sentenced to a minimum of 20 years.

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