Brazilian Deliveroo rider who intervened in Parnell Square attack: ‘I had time to think about what my purpose in life is’

Caio Benício will be standing as a Fianna Fáil candidate in the local elections

The former Brazilian Deliveroo rider who intervened in the knife attack outside a school on Parnell Square helping to rescue a five-year-old child said he “could be a voice” representing the immigrant community as he will be standing as Fianna Fáil candidate in the local elections.

Caio Benício (43) was on his bike when he witnessed three children and a care worker being attacked by a man armed with a knife. He intervened using his helmet to strike the attacker. Mr Benício was hailed as a hero of the attack, and a GoFundMe page set up for him raised more than €370,000.

He has announced he will be standing as a candidate for Dublin City Council in the north city area.

Mr Benício told The Irish Times running for local elections was a decision he made “to repay in some way” the kindness people had for him while he was dealing with the aftermath of the attack.


“By meeting people on the streets and all the affection I got, later I realised how meaningful that act of mine was. It was an act of instinct that represented a lot not only for the Brazilian community but also for the entire immigrant cause.

“Knowing that after the riots, when it was another immigrant who helped [stop the attack], what I did had a greater impact. And then, I realised that I could be a voice for those people, and I began to feel that this is my mission,” he said.

Mr Benício moved to Ireland in 2022 to support his family after his restaurant burned down in Niterói, a city in Rio de Janeiro. After arriving in Ireland, he soon joined the gig economy workforce and was working 10-hour daily shifts to pay off debts in Brazil.

He said he could bring the experience he gained while working as a Deliveroo rider to “promote a change” in relation to road safety and work rights, focused on those holding a stamp 2 visa.

Mr Benício said that the increase of hate crimes based on nationality in recent years is not “only an issue in Ireland, but globally” that only can be addressed through politics.

“Ireland is understood as a migrant country. The entire world saw Ireland build the United States. So, what’s the point of these crimes that happen on the streets? I don’t think these people are aware of history.”

“What I stand for is better treatment [for the immigrant community]. Immigrants who are here working hard to provide better conditions for their family, paying taxes, and contributing to the growth of the economy deserve decent treatment,” he said.

The former Deliveroo rider said he had a life change following the attack and decided to settle down roots for good in Ireland. He is entering new businesses and is bringing investors from Brazil to Ireland. Mr Benício recently teamed up with Ondway Delivery to improve diversity and work conditions for gig economy workers.

“Everyone is calling me a hero. But in politics, I know that my head is on the wall. I know I’m going to be criticised. I will take the chance for a greater cause.

“I had time to really think about what I want to do for the future and see what my purpose in life is. I could be there in Brazil, on the beach, drinking my pints, but I can really make a difference. So, I don’t bother with criticism. Deep down, my intentions are the best from the bottom of my heart,” he said.

Speaking about Fianna Fáil, the former Deliveroo rider came in contact with Senator Mary Fitzpatrick through Isabel Oliveira (38), a Brazilian woman standing for local elections in Dublin’s north inner city.

“It wasn’t an invitation from them. It was something that came naturally from conversations we had. Some people may be a little afraid of politicians, especially in Brazil, which has a lot of corruption cases. People are completely unbelievable there, but here [Ireland], many people believe in politics, and we must have the strength to really help those needed the most,” he said.

The former Deliveroo rider said that immigrants must be aware of their right to vote. “They must participate in politics if they want to. The best path to improve quality of life is through politics, there’s no other way,” he said.