Yesterday, a Brazilian jury convicted Vitalmiro Bastos de Moura of ordering the contract assassination of Sister Dorothy Stang, SND in the Amazon rainforest in 2005. He received the maximum penalty of 30 years in prison. According to Sr. Joan Burke, the representative of the SNDs at the United Nations, this is the first time in more than 1500 contract killings that the person who ordered the killing has been convicted.
I first wrote about Dot Stang’s murder in February 2006.
Trinity remembered her during our Founders Day Symposium on Environmental Justice in 2006, and we were fortunate to hear from her brother David Stang at that time.
While her death is still a shocking reminder of the dangers inherent in standing up for justice in some of the world’s most troubled places, the conviction of her killer sends a signal that a civilized society cannot tolerate such lawlessness. Perhaps this conviction will give some hope to the 1500 families still awaiting justice. Dorothy’s influence and great work continue in the Amazon region.