Mauricio "Shogun" Rua was carjacked and robbed by four men armed with rifles in Brazil recently, making him wonder what the government is doing to stop the violence in his country.
The former UFC light heavyweight champion was returning to Niteroi after having dinner with his manager Eduardo Alonso and UFC welterweight Demian Maia in Barra da Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro, with a friend on April 27. A mile away from the Rio-Niteroi bridge, they were forced to stop the car by the criminals.
"I was doing a photoshoot with Jose Aldo for Venum, and a friend of mine, Pixote, drove me there," Rua told MMAFighting.com. "After that, we picked up Eduardo and Demian at their hotel in Barra da Tijuca and went to dinner at a restaurant. We watched the UFC and then left them at their hotel."
"Pixote was taking me back to Niteroi, and when we were about to get to the Rio-Niteroi bridge, a car stopped in front of us and four men jumped out of it with guns. There was nothing we could have done.
"I left everything inside the car. I thought about getting my wallet and phone, but maybe they would think I was getting a gun so I left everything there. We were at Linha Vermelha, at 2:30 a.m., and we had to walk two miles to get at the nearest police station. I’m glad no one got hurt."
The incident happened less than seven weeks before the World Cup in Brazil. Shogun is not concerned about the violence during the soccer competition, but he questions what the government is going to do after the final game which is scheduled for July 13 at Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
"It’s going to be safe during the World Cup, with more cops and army in the streets, but then what?" Shogun asks. "And what about the rest of our lives? It’s going to be like it is today? There’s no point of doing a special plan during the World Cup and then it’s over. We pay taxes to have security the whole year, not only for a month during the World Cup."
Rua currently lives in Sao Paulo, where he trains at Maia’s gym, and he blames the government for the lack of security.
"In a country like Brazil, when you have major issues to solve as violence and health care, the government spends money with sports," he said. "They don’t use the money correctly in Brazil. Rio and Sao Paulo are the most dangerous cities, but the whole country is dangerous. But what impressed me the most in this situation was that they were using rifles."