At least 11 dead after passenger boat sinks in northern Brazil

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Sep 8 (Reuters) – A passenger boat carrying dozens of people to Brazil’s northern region sank on Thursday, leaving at least 11 people dead and several missing, officials said.

The speedboat had left Marajo Island in the northern state of Para and was heading for the state capital, Belem, the country’s navy said in a statement.

The state’s public safety and social defense secretary said by email that 63 people had been rescued and 11 bodies had been recovered, and a search was underway to locate the remaining people believed to have been on board.

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State firefighters and the nation’s navy earlier said in separate statements that 14 people had been reported dead.

State firefighters said in the statement that the boat did not have clearance to carry passengers on the intercity waterway and began the journey from an illegal port.

Civilian police have opened an investigation into the crash, the state fire department statement added.

“The civil police adopt all appropriate measures, within the framework of their powers, to investigate and prosecute those responsible.”

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Reporting by Carolina Pulice; Editing by Isabel Woodford, Josie Kao and Leslie Adler

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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