Violent Rio picks Naomi Campbell as its ambassador

Friday, January 19, 2007; 3:13 PM

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - The beautiful but violent Rio de Janeiro invited the pretty but troubled Naomi Campbell to be its ambassador on Friday, two days after she admitted in a New York court to throwing a mobile phone at her housekeeper.

The British Campbell, a prominent black supermodel, told the mayor she wanted to raise money for the poor in Rio, a multiracial city known for its vibrant nightlife.

"She has an image that is the face of Rio de Janeiro, she could represent it abroad like nobody else," Mayor Cesar Maia said on the city's official Web site.

On Tuesday, Campbell was sentenced to five days of community service for third-degree assault during a dispute over a pair of jeans. She got a $363 fine and was ordered to attend anger management classes.

The supermodel had been charged with second-degree assault and faced up to seven years in prison and deportation.

Rio de Janeiro, one of the most violent cities in the world, has asked the government to send federal troops to stop the growing gang violence. On Wednesday, a former Miss Brazil had to undergo surgery on her hand after being attacked outside a Rio fashion show.

Full Legal Notice
© 2007 Reuters