A Portuguese court has sentenced a white man who shot dead a black actor in a busy street last year to more than two decades in jail, in a case that has put racism and the country’s colonial past in the spotlight.
Bruno Candé, 39, of Guinean origin, was shot several times by a white Portuguese man, Evaristo Marinho, 77, at Avenida de Moscavide, about six miles from Lisbon’s city centre, in July 2020.
Marinho was convicted of racially motivated murder and will spend 22 years and nine months in prison, the court ruled.
Marinho, who was a soldier during the war in the former Portuguese colony Angola, racially abused Candé before shooting him, telling him, among other things, to “go back to your country”.
Soon after the killing, hundreds of anti-racism protesters took over one of Lisbon’s main squares to demand justice for Candé and for all other victims of racism.
“Bruno Candé lost his life and left his family and friends,” the Portuguese legislator Joacine Katar Moreira wrote on Twitter. “This murder hit us all – 22 years is the minimum to alleviate the pain and anger we feel.”
Europe’s top human rights body, the Council of Europe, has said Portugal must do more to confront its colonial past and role in the transatlantic slave trade in order to help fight racism and discrimination in the country today.
Complaints of racial discrimination increased 50% to 655 in 2020 but the figure is likely to be far below the actual rate of racist incidents, the secretary of state for equality, Rosa Monteiro, said in March.
Recent racially motivated crimes include a KKK-style torchlight rally and emailed threats to black legislators, including Katar Moreira.
In a separate report, the Council of Europe said there were numerous serious accusations of racist violence by Portuguese police.