Police have arrested a football player on suspicion of ordering a killing.
Kel Baiano was apprehended in Patos, Brazil, last Wednesday night (18 October) after going “on the run” when his arrest warrant was issued. He is now being held on remand at a detention centre in the city.
Police suspect the 29-year-old of masterminding a murder that was carried out in Espírito Santo State. Officials have not revealed any further details about the case at the time of writing, so as to not hamper the investigation at this stage.
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The athlete may also face animal cruelty charges after police found three dogs at his home, which had allegedly been left without food and water for three days. The animals have since been taken to a veterinary clinic for treatment.
Police say Baiano is signed to a team in Rio Grande do Norte State. He most recently played for Esporte de Patos after joining the national fourth-division team Nacional de Patos.
The striker, whose full name is Judicael dos Santos Ferreira Filho, is originally from Feira de Santana and began his football career at Fluminense de Feira in 2016. He was playing for Real Noroeste, with whom he won the Campeonato Capixaba in 2021 when he allegedly committed the crime.
The footballer won the Campeonato Baiano Second Division in 2017 and 2019, with Jequié and Atlanta respectively. He was also part of the Ferroviário team that lifted the Copa Fares Lopes in 2018.
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Additionally, the athlete has had several spells at other Brazilian clubs. “The club is internally discussing the situation to issue a statement,” said Esporte de Patos CFO, Paulo Vieira.
“We were completely caught off guard by this event and are waiting for more information on the matter.” At the time of writing, Baiano’s Facebook bio reads: “I can only thank you, Jesus. A servant of the Lord.”
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