SAO PAULO – The wife of a food industry executive admitted to police that she shot her husband in the head, dismembered his body and scattered the remains in Greater São Paulo, reported online media on Wednesday. Charged in the sensational crime is Elize Araújo Matsunaga Kitano, 38, widow of Yoki Foods chief executive Marcos Kitano Matsunaga, 42, who went missing on May 19th.
Yoki Foods CEO Slaying Captivates Brazil
The woman told police that her husband assaulted her after she confronted him with evidence of his infidelities and that she shot him in self-defense. Police detained Elize, who has degrees in both law and nursing, on Monday (4) on suspicion of murder.
Homicide investigators say that Elize confessed the crime but says she acted out of passion and betrayal [Brazil's penal code penalizes crimes of passion more leniently]. The murder weapon, a .380 semi-automatic pistol, is now with the police.
According to Folha de São Paulo, the handgun used by the widow to murder her husband was a gift from the executive to his wife.
According to the police, the widow said that she hired investigators to follow her husband and gather evidence of his infidelities. She confronted him with the evidence provided to her but her husband became enraged and attacked her. She shot him in the head and dragged his body into the maid’s bathroom where she dismembered it.
Police say she put the pieces of her husband’s corpse in bags and scattered them through the woods in Cotia, in Greater São Paulo.
“She spontaneously confessed that she is the author of the murder and confesses that she acted alone. It also reaffirms the thesis that the crime was a crime of passion. She said there was an argument because she learned of infidelity and marital discord that seems to there was an attack on her and at that time, she took the gun and shot him,” the police statement said.
Knowledgeable of anatomy – Elize is a nurse and worked in a surgery center – she said she used a knife with 30 cm blade to sever the arms, legs, torso and head of the executive. After her work, which lasted about four hours, she packed the pieces in blue plastic bags.
Police are looking for the private detective that Elize contracted to follow her husband. Authorities want to subpoena him to testify about his work. Police say that he told a news crew that he followed the husband and collected evidence that proves his unfaithfulness.
Although police suspect a crime of passion, financial reasons is not being ruled out. Although police suspect Elize of killing her husband out of jealousy after discovering the betrayal, she and her daughter would be entitled to receive about U.S. $300,000 dollars from life insurance policies.
Police did not release CCTV images from the building where the couple lived, but according to media reports they show Marcos enter the building on the 19th, but do not show him leaving. “We know that he entered the apartment and did not leave. In theory, the murder happened then,” said the investigator.
The reports also say that the CCTV images show Elize leaving the elevator pulling three suitcases. The images also show her returning 12 hours later without the bags. Plastic bags police found in the couple’s home are identical to the ones found containing the victim’s body parts.
On the day that police arrested Elize, she turned three weapons into the Municipal Guard as part of a gun buy back program. Under the program, the municipal Guard exchanges cash for guns with no questions asked. The weapons are then destroyed.
The slaying is front-page news in all the Brazilian newspapers, the lead story on TV News and trending on twitter all day long. Not since winner of the Mega-Senna Lottery $50,000,0000 jackpot was slain, allegedly by his young wife in 2007, has a murder so captured the public imagination in Brazil.