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Corruption Charges Against Temer May Go To Trial Printer friendly page Print This
By Staff Writers, teleSUR
Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017

Brazilian President Michel Temer may go on trial for corruption. | Photo: Reuters

The rapporteur for the corruption case against the Brazilian president, Michel Temer, says there is sufficient evidence to warrant confirming the charges and proceeding to a trial. If that happens, President Temer will have to step aside for up to 180 days, until a verdict is reached.
Sergio Zveiter has asked a Committee of Brazil's Lower House to accept the corruption charges against Michel Temer and move towards a trial.
"There is sufficient evidence"

Sergio Zveiter was making his initial presentation of the case to the Constitution and Justice Committee, or CCJ, of Brazil's Lower House of Congress. He told them, "There is sufficient evidence. This is not a dreamt-up accusation. It is necessary to investigate the president's involvement in receiving R$500,000."

The CCJ is expected to make a recommendation on the charges against Temer later this week. The full House must then vote in favor by two-thirds before the Supreme Court can open a trial.

There were angry scenes just before the CCJ's opening session, as some of the political parties supporting the government changed their members on the committee, fearing they might not vote in favor of Temer. One of the lawmakers who was removed, Delegado Waldir, shouted, "Cowards! This government is a bunch of bandits!"

Brazil's Attorney General Rodrigo Janot requested last month that charges of corruption be brought against President Temer. A few days earlier the Federal Police had confirmed the authenticity of an audio recording made in March as part of a plea bargain.

In the recorded conversation with Joesley Batista, the head of the JBS meatpacking firm, President Temer was heard apparently approving the payment of bribes to Eduardo Cunha, the imprisoned former speaker of Congress, to ensure his silence over the involvement of other government figures in a series of corruption scandals.

President Temer's popularity has plummeted to 8 percent or less as the corruption accusations against him and other politicians deepen.

At the same time, the government is hopeful that the Brazilian Senate will approve President Temer's disputed labor reform bill on Tuesday. Temer made the labor reform, along with a parallel proposal to reform pensions, the central plank of his administration.

Both reforms have strong support from Brazilian businesses. But a united front of Brazil's trade union confederations has held two general strikes against the reforms. They say the measures will remove basic rights that Brazilian workers have enjoyed for 75 years.

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