Prosecutor general to charge Temer with two crimes

After some back-and-forth, the Office of the Prosecutor General (PGR) decided to combine in a single charge the accusations of obstruction of justice and criminal organization against President Michel Temer. The piece is likely to be submitted to the Federal Supreme Court (STF) after the Independence holiday (September 7), that is, in the last week of Rodrigo Janot ahead of the body. He hands the post over to his successor, Raquel Dodge, on September 18.

Finishing the charges still depends on the inclusion of accusations made by currency dealer Lúcio Funaro, who last week signed a plea bargain agreement with the PGR. According to Valor  Mr. Funaro implicated Mr. Temer both in the crimes of obstruction of justice and of criminal organization. Allies of the president were also implicated by Mr. Funaro.

Investigators following the negotiations with Mr. Funaro assure he brought “heavy” charges against the president and his closest allies. At the Palácio do Planalto, the presidential office, the expectation is exactly the opposite. Aides to Mr. Temer — who will spend ten days outside of Brazil — bet the charge will be a “festival of inferences.”

For Mr. Funaro’s deposition to be part of the charge, the PGR expects his plea bargain to be certified by Justice Edson Fachin, who handles cases related to Operation Car Wash at the Supreme Court. Mr. Fachin has already received the terms of the agreement, but has not yet made any manifestation. The certification doesn’t depend on the content of the deposition, but only on its legality, regularity and spontaneity.

In addition to staying in prison for some more time, Mr. Funaro accepted paying a fine of a few million reais and be permanently barred from any activity linked to the financial market, which was where he began his career.

Until recently, Mr. Janot considered the possibility of filing two charges against the president. With his tenure ahead of the PGR approaching its end, however, he decided to include the two accusations in the same piece. Splitting the charges was considered by the president’s allies as a political action of Mr. Janot. In June, Mr. Temer was charged with passive corruption, but the floor of the Chamber of Deputies didn’t authorize the STF to prosecute the president. If the charge were accepted by the legislators, Mr. Temer would have to step aside for 180 days.

The presentation of the charge is likely to be Mr. Janot’s last big act of his four-year tenure as prosecutor general. Before that, he will still have to deal with pending cases such as the plea bargains of executives of engineering groups OAS and Queiroz Galvão. There was also expectation that a plea bargain was cancelled for lack of evidence, but the situation changed and the agreement may be maintained.

After he hands his post to his successor, Mr. Janot will take a 30-day vacation. Upon returning, he takes back his chair of deputy prosecutor general, being responsible for cases at the Superior Court of Justice (STJ).

He still doesn’t know in which area he will act, but has already manifested preference for cases of criminal law. A resolution of the Superior Council of the Federal Ministry says it is up to the prosecutor general to designate the areas for which each deputy prosecutor general will be allocated. The preferences of each and the criterion of seniority will be considered.

Source: Valor Econômico