MONTES CLAROS, Brazil, March 5 (UPI) -- A felon in Brazil who was sentenced to 22 years and three months in prison about a year ago has already been granted a work release -- to play professional soccer.
Even though he confessed to ordering the kidnapping and murder of his ex-girlfriend Eliza Samudio last March, Brazilian goalkeeper Bruno Fernandes was allowed to sign a five-year contract with Montes Claros of the Campeonato Mineiro and he will periodically be released to train with the team as well as play in matches.
The former Flamengo captain reportedly wanted Samudio dead so he could avoid paying child support, and her dead body was allegedly fed to dogs.
Fernandes has been behind bars since 2010 for ordering a previous abduction of Samudio and is thus available to take advantage of a provision in Brazilian law that allows a felon more freedom after three or four years based on good behavior.
Montes Claros club president, Ville Mocellin, confirmed the controversial decision.
"We want to give an opportunity to the man Bruno," he told OTempo. "For him, it is a chance to return to play. To the club, he is an athlete who can strengthen the team and a way to invest in the social side."
When he does join the team, Fernandes will be accompanied by a police escort.