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Robbers escape with hostages atop cars in Brazil bank heist

Posted at 1:48 PM, Aug 31, 2021

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Bank robbers armed with explosives and high-powered rifles plunged a city in Sao Paulo state's interior into terror, taking civilians hostage and even putting some on their cars while making their escape.

Video shared on social media showed a booming shootout on Monday and men dressed in black marching hostages down a street in Araçatuba, 520 kilometers (323 miles) from Sao Paulo.

After ransacking at least two bank branches, the criminals drove off with hostages lying on their cars' roofs and hoods.

Another hostage stood with his torso protruding from an SUV's sunroof and his hands held in the air.

According to the Associated Press, the suspects placed the hostages on the hoods and roofs of the getaway cars to deter police from firing at them.

At least three people were killed.

The AP reported that two people who died were civilians, including a businessman who went to film the attack and a delivery boy.

The third person killed was a suspect, who was found in his car.

Six other people were also injured.

At least 10 cars were involved in the ordeal, the AP reported.