The Federal Police named senator Renan Calheiros for passive corruption and money laundering in the context of an investigation into an alleged bribe of BRL 1 million that was allegedly requested and received by the congressman in 2012. According to the corporation, the payment would have been made by Odebrecht as a ‘counterpart’ for the political support for the approval of a Senate resolution that restricted tax incentives for imported products granted by States, benefiting Braskem – an episode known as the ‘War of the Ports’.
In a report dated this Thursday, 1st, sent to Justice Edson Fachin, of the Federal Supreme Court, the investigators say they have identified ‘concrete evidential elements of authorship and materiality to attest to the presence of sufficient evidence’ that Renan had committed the crimes together with four other people, also indicted.
“In the present case, the existence of evidential elements was found demonstrating that Senator Renan Calheiros, codename ‘Justiça’, received undue amounts of R$ 1 million, with the password “fair”, on 05/31/2012 , at 3:00 pm, at the address of the company Internet Pool Comércio Eletrônicos S/A, through Mr. Fábio Brito Matos, employee of the company and driver of Mr. Milton de Oliveira Lyra Filho, financial operator of the parliamentarian and managing partner of the company”, says excerpt of the part.
Fábio Matos and Milton Lyra were also indicted for the crimes of corruption and money laundering. The PF also attributed laundering crimes to Adolpho Julio da Silva Mello Neto (codename Botox) and Rosangela Benetton Grimaldi (codename ‘Maravilha’). According to the investigators, both would be linked to TrendBank, which would have been used to operationalize the delivery of values.
Information about the alleged bribes was revealed by informers Claudio Melo Filho, Carlos Fadigas and Marcelo Bahia Odebrecht, in 2017. The investigations culminated in an ostensible phase, opened in the following year, 2018, Operation Armistice.
Initially, the inquiry that was being processed with the STF also involved three former senators: Romero Jucá, Delcídio do Amaral and Gim Argello. The findings on the involvement of former parliamentarians were sent to the first instance, which is why the delegate Vinicius Venturini asked to share the conclusive report with the delegate responsible for the case in the Federal District Federal Police.
In a statement, the senator’s defense says that the indictment request is a retaliatory move by the Federal Police for the work performed by him in the CPI of Covid and that the institution does not have the necessary competence to indict a senator of the Republic. The function belongs to the Federal Supreme Court (STF).
Matheus Felivene, Ph.D. in criminal law from the University of São Paulo (USP), explains that the request for indictment filed by the PF has no practical effect, because it is up to the STF to authorize the action. “The indictment without authorization would violate the prerogative of function of the parliamentarian”, he says.
According to Renan, the institution would have initiated an inquiry against businessman Francisco Maximiano, owner of Need Medicines – a company involved in allegations of irregularities in the process of acquisition of the Covaxin vaccine by the Ministry of Health -, with the aim of placing him in the condition of being investigated and , thus, facilitate obtaining your Habeas Corpus from the STF.
“It’s a surprise that just now, when the Federal Police, a State institution, opens the investigation on the Need to facilitate Habeas Corpus of the seller of the bribe vaccine and guarantee its silence in the CPI, they try to retaliate”, says an excerpt of the issued note. for the defense of Renan Calheiros.
Last Thursday, 1st, Minister Rosa Weber accepted Maximiano’s defense request and granted the habeas corpus that guarantees the businessman the right to remain silent during his testimony to the CPI to preserve the right to non-self-incrimination. The Commission has not yet set the date for the new testimony of the owner of Necessidade.
The businessman’s hearing was scheduled to take place on Thursday, but it was canceled so that the senators could hear Luiz Paulo Dominguetti Pereira, representative of the company Davatti Medical Suply, who accused a member of the Bolsonaro government of operating a scheme to charge a bribe of a dollar on the value of each dose of the Astrazeneca vaccine, as revealed in a newspaper report Folha de São Paulo.
Lawyer Luís Henrique Machado, who defends Renan, says that the senator “has been investigated since 2009 by the Attorney General’s Office. Under the investigative aspect, his life was investigated and no sign of illegality about his actions was ever found. He has never dealt with, nor authorized or consented to third parties speaking on his behalf”. The full defense: “Finally, it is important to point out that approximately two thirds of the investigations against the senator have already been shelved for lack of evidence. As with the other inquiries, the defense is confident that Odebrecht’s investigation will also be shelved, not least because no evidence was produced in the senator’s disfavor, leaving only the isolated word of the whistleblowers.”
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