Crack dealers in northern Brazil had been using a well-trained parrot to alert them when police were approaching, authorities said after a police raid seized a number of human suspects and one with feathers.
The unnamed parrot was seized by officers after they took down a couple of alleged drug dealers. The parrot was trained to shout “Mum, the police!” whenever authorities came close.
The police operation in the community of Vila Irmã Dulce in the state of Piauí uncovered the winged suspect.
A Brazilian journalist who came face to face with the imprisoned parrot on Tuesday described it as a “super obedient” creature – albeit one that had kept its beak firmly shut after being “arrested”.
“So far it hasn’t made a sound … completely silent,” the reporter said.
Alexandre Clark, a local vet, confirmed the parrot had not cooperated:
“Lots of police officers have come by and he’s said nothing.”
The Brazilian broadcaster Globo said the “papagaio do tráfico” (drug trafficking parrot) had been handed over to a local zoo where it would spend three months learning to fly before being released.
The bird joins a growing list of animals implicated in Brazil’s drug trade, although most have been reptiles.
In 2008, police seized two small alligators during a raid on a favela in western Rio de Janeiro, claiming local gangsters had fed their enemies to the animals. However, the father of one of the accused gangsters rejected those accusations, alleging his son’s gang had once tried to do so – but the alligator had refused to eat the corpse.