Jailed drug trafficker Clauvino da Silva [left], attempted to sneak out of the city’s most notorious prison wearing a disguise he hoped would convincing guards he was in fact his 19-year-old daughter [right], heading home after visiting hours
The general belief in Brazil is that the high jinks of a local drug lord on Saturday was mimicking Mexico’s “Shorty”, better known as the now caged drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, when he made his cinematic 2015 jail-break from Mexico’s maximum security jail.
Guzman required a mile-long tunnel, a multimillion dollar bribe and even a private plane that whisked him to freedom in the mountains of Sinaloa, but Flavio drug kingpin ‘Shorty’ Clauvino da Silva who is serving a 73-year sentence in Brazil’s most notorious prison, went for a cheap home made revision.
El Chapo’s Brazilian namesake hoped to achieve the same using just a silicone mask, a black bra and wig, and a skin-tight T-shirt emblazoned with three pink doughnuts.
On Saturday, the Rio de Janeiro-based drug trafficker attempted to sneak out of the city’s most notorious prison wearing that disguise and in the hope of convincing guards he was in fact his 19-year-old daughter heading home after visiting hours.
The latex trick
The mask, wig and women’s clothing that was used by Clauvino da Silva in his failed jailbreak attempt
But when Silva – AKA Baixinho (“Shorty”), requested the return of his daughter’s ID card at the prison entrance, officers saw through his low-budget disguise and asked him to strip in front of the cameras. That video has since gone viral in Brazil and around the world.
Silva, who is serving a 73-year sentence for his involvement in the Red Command drug faction, appears to have fancied himself as Brazil’s answer to Ethan Hunt, the Mission Impossible hero who uses an ultra-realistic latex mask to dupe his foes.
But Brazilian headline writers said the botched breakout had more in common with the lowbrow Hollywood comedy White Chicks, in which two black FBI agents unconvincingly pose as witless white socialites.
“White Chicks 2 coming to cinemas soon?” asked the front page of Rio tabloid Meia Hora on Sunday alongside a photograph of the uncloaked Clauvino and his purported female alter ego “Clauvina”.
The Rio newspaper O Dia was even less forgiving. “Oh, aren’t I a naughty girl,” its headline said mockingly.
“White Chicks 2 coming to cinemas soon?” Presented by Clauvino… ehm.. “Clauvina”
Silva is serving a 73-year sentence for his involvement in the Red Command drug faction. Saturday’s farcical getaway was not Silva’s first. In January 2013 he tunneled out of the same prison complex through the sewers, only to be recaptured a month later, while on a crime spree
But Saturday’s farcical getaway was not Silva’s first. In January 2013 he was one of 31 prisoners who tried to tunnel out of the same prison complex through the sewers. Four dirt-covered inmates were immediately recaptured but Silva made it out alongside other gang members nicknamed Fish, Spiderman and Sledge Hammer.
The following month he was reportedly rearrested while attempting to seize control of a shantytown in Rio’s western districts with a group of heavily armed men.
Reports on Monday said the 42-year-old drug trafficker had been moved to solitary confinement but was unlikely to face extra prison time since his unsuccessful bid for freedom had not involved violence.
His daughter, Ana Gabriele Leandro da Silva, who had remained behind in the prison as part of the ruse, seemed to have been less lucky.
According to Rio newspaper Extra she will be charged with abetting prison escape, a crime punishable with up to two years in prison. Seven other visitors – including a pregnant woman suspected of smuggling the disguise into the jail – are also being investigated.