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Wallace Souza
Born Francisco Wallace Cavalcante de Souza
12 August 1958 (1958-08-12) (age 51)
Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil
Nationality Brazilian
Alma mater College of Business São Luiz Gonzaga
State College Basílio Machado
University Nilton Lins
Occupation Presenter, politician
Known for Presenting Canal Livre
Political party Progressive Party
Children 4
Parents Lucimar Portela de Souza
Maria Odila Cavalcante de Souza

Wallace Souza (born 12 August 1958) is a Brazilian television presenter and politician. He was an elected member of the Legislative Assembly of Amazonas until his expulsion in October 2009. [1] He is commonly known for presenting the controversial program Canal Livre.

In 2009, he was subject to worldwide media coverage, when Amazonas State Police launched an investigation into the claims that murders had been ordered in order to boost ratings on his program.[2]


Early and personal life

Souza was born in Manaus, Amazonas. He obtained degrees at the College of Business São Luiz Gonzaga and the State College Basílio Machado. Souza also attended the Center for Study of Human Behavior and University Nilton Lins. [3] He is married with four children. [3]

In 1979, Souza became a police officer,[4] but he left the force under a cloud in 1987.[5]


Political career

He was first elected in 1998 by the Liberal Party. He later took leadership of the Social Christian Party. He was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Amazonas in 2000, and was re-elected in 2002. In 2003 he was made Parliamentary Ombudsman of the Legislative Assembly of the State. [3] His political career is now under threat,[4] as he was expelled from the assembly in 2009. [6]

Broadcasting career

He began presenting Canal Livre in 1989.[4] The program which was described as "investigative journalism aimed at fighting crime and social injustice,"[5] ran until late 2008.[4] The program, which drew a large audience, showed police raids and arrests, with presenters often following police chases in a helicopter.[7] It was one of the most popular show in Manaus.[4]

Criminal accusations

“The order to execute always came from the politician and his son, who then alerted the TV crews to get to the scene before the police.”
Thomaz Vasconcelos, head of Amazonas Secretariat of Intelligence.[4]

In 2009, Souza attracted international media attention when he was accused of hiring hitmen to kill five people to increase the ratings of his program.[2][8] Suspicions were raised because he was frequently first to the scene of a crime, gathering graphic footage of the victims.[9] A former police officer, Moacir Jorge da Costa, claimed he carried out one of the murders.[7] Souza and his legal team have denied Souza's involvement with the murders.[8] Souza's son, Raphael, was arrested and is currently in prison facing charges of homicide, drug trafficking and illegal gun possession.[4]

Weapons, ammunition and cash were discovered at Souza's home when the police conducted a search.[4][8]

In October 2009, he was presented with charges with murder, drug-trafficking, intimidation of witnesses, illegal carrying of arms and formation of a criminal gang.[10] He was also expelled from the state assembly. [6] After an arrest warrant was issued, Souza disappeared and 60[11 ] civil and federal[12] police began to search for him. [1] Road blocks were mounted to try to stop him from leaving Manaus.[10] He subsequently gave himself up to police on October 9, 2009.[13] He still repeatedly proclaims his innocence.[14] His brother, vice-mayor Carlos Souza, requested that when sent to prison he have his own cell and be separated from fellow inmates.[12] Vanessa Lima, the former producer of the program, was arrested in December 2009.[15]


  1. ^ a b "TV Host Hunted Over 'Murder For Ratings'". Sky News. 2009-10-07. Retrieved 2009-10-07.  
  2. ^ a b "Brazilian host investigated over TV killings". RTÉ News and Current Affairs. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  3. ^ a b c "Deputado Wallace Souza" (in Portuguese). Assembléia Legislativa do Estado do Amazonas. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h "Brazil crime show host 'used murder to boost ratings'". London: Times Online. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  5. ^ a b "Murder for ratings? Brazil cops suspect TV host". The Associated Press. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  6. ^ a b Duffy, Gary (7 October 2009). "Accused Brazil TV host 'missing'". BBC News. Retrieved 2009-10-07.  
  7. ^ a b "Crime show host 'ordered TV deaths'". 2009-08-06.,27574,25891742-401,00.html. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  8. ^ a b c "TV crime-show host accused of ordering murders to boost ratings". France 24. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  9. ^ "Brazil TV Host 'Used Hitmen To Boost Ratings'". Sky News. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-08-12.  
  10. ^ a b Hennigan, Tom (2009-10-08). "Judge orders arrest of crime show host for ordering murders". The Irish Times. Retrieved 2009-10-09.  
  11. ^ "Busca a Wallace Souza mobiliza policiais em Manaus" (in Portuguese). 2009-10-06. Retrieved 2009-10-07.  
  12. ^ a b "Ex-deputado Wallace Souza é procurado pela polícia" (in Portuguese). O Estado de S. Paulo. 2009-10-06.,ex-deputado-wallace-souza-e-procurado-pela-policia,446885,0.htm. Retrieved 2009-10-07.  
  13. ^ "Fugitive TV host surrenders, Brazilian government says". 2009-10-09. pp. CNN International. Retrieved 2009-10-09.  
  14. ^ "Host accused of deaths for ratings surrenders". The Dallas Morning News. 2009-10-10. Retrieved 2009-10-12.  
  15. ^ "Ex-produtora de programa de TV do ex-deputado Wallace Souza, do Amazonas, é presa" (in Portuguese). Portal Amazônia. 10 December 2009. Retrieved 13 December 2009.  

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