The Supreme Court justice overseeing Brazil's Car Wash corruption probe, Edson Fachin, ordered the investigations targeting Senators Aécio Neves, Romero Jucá and Renan Calheiros to be sent to the Federal Police. The ruling handed down Monday (April 17) initiated the Federal Police's investigation, which may include wiretaps and tax disclosures in addition to the hearings of suspects.
Aécio Neves is a member of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB). In 2014, he ran for president as the main adversary of the Workers' Party's Dilma Rousseff's reelection bid.
Romero Jucá is a member of the Party of the Brazilian Democratic Movement (PMDB), which became Brazil's ruling party under Michel Temer when Rousseff was impeached in 2016. He served briefly as Temer's Minister of Planning, but resigned after a tape emerged in which he appeared to discuss a plot to stop Operation Car Wash—a sweeping corruption investigation implicating dozens of Brazil's most powerful politicians and business executives—by overthrowing Rousseff from presidency.
Senator Renan Calheiros is also a member of the PMDB. He recently served as president of the Senate, where he currently is his party's leader.
Investigations involving other Congress members should proceed likewise over the next days. Dozens of probes were ordered by Justice Fachin at the request of the Prosecutor-General's Office after the politicians' names were brought up by the plea bargain witnesses linked with Odebrecht building company, one of the Petrobras contractors involved in the scandal.
Aécio Neves and Romero Jucá are the senators ordered under the most probes in connection with Odebrecht's plea bargain testimonies obtained in the Car Wash scandal—each of them is targeted by five inquiries. Renan Calheiros is the target of four investigations in connection with the testimonies, increasing the total number of probes against him in the case to 12.
Translated by Mayra Borges