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Friday, January 02, 2004 - Page updated at 12:00 A.M.

Brazil copies U.S. law, fingerprints Americans

By Vivian Sequera
The Associated Press

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SÃO PAULO, Brazil — Police fingerprinted and photographed Americans arriving at São Paulo's airport yesterday in response to new rules requiring the same for Brazilians entering the United States.

Federal Judge Julier Sebastião da Silva ordered the measure Monday in response to the new U.S. anti-terror regulation requiring citizens from 27 nations, including Brazil, to be fingerprinted and photographed when entering America.

The U.S. anti-terror regulation takes effect Monday at all 115 airports handling international flights and 14 major seaports. It will allow instant checks on an immigrant's or visitor's criminal background.

On Wednesday, Brazil's Foreign Ministry requested that Brazilians be removed from the U.S. list, saying Brazil would consider treating U.S. citizens the same way upon their arrival.

"At first, most of the Americans were angered at having to go through all this, but they were usually more understanding once they learned that Brazilians are subjected to the same treatment in the U.S.," Wagner Castilho, press officer for the federal police in São Paulo, said of those arriving at São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport.

Brazil also requires visas for U.S. citizens, in response to a similar requirement for Brazilians entering the United States.


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