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Avianca Brasil files for bankruptcy protection -report

SAO PAULO, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Brazil's fourth-largest airline, Avianca Brasil, filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday, newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo reported on Tuesday, without citing sources.

The airline has struggled for years with recurrent losses and recently faced the prospect of repossession of several of its aircraft.

Avianca Brasil is independent from the better-known Avianca Holdings SA, which is based in Colombia and publicly traded. Both airlines are owned by a holding company controlled by German Efromovich, a Bolivian-born investor.

Avianca Brasil did not immediately reply to a request for comment. (Reporting by Marcelo Rochabrun, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien)