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Sunday July 14, 2024

Brazilian police indict Bolsonaro in undeclared diamonds case

Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly

By News Desk
July 07, 2024
Brazils former pesident Jair Bolsonaro seen at an event at the Planalto Palace in Brasilia, Brazil March 21, 2022. — Reuters
Brazil's former pesident Jair Bolsonaro seen at an event at the Planalto Palace in Brasilia, Brazil March 21, 2022. — Reuters

SAO PAULO: Brazil’s Federal Police have indicted former President Jair Bolsonaro for money laundering and criminal association in connection with undeclared diamonds the far-right leader received from Saudi Arabia during his time in office, according to a source with knowledge of the accusations.

A second source confirmed the indictment, although not for which specific crimes. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly.

Brazil’s Supreme Court has yet to receive the police report with the indictment. Once it does, the country’s prosecutor-general, Paulo Gonet, will analyze the document and decide whether to file charges and force Bolsonaro to stand trial.

This is Bolsonaro’s second indictment since leaving office, following another in March for allegedly falsifying his COVID-19 vaccination certificate. But this indictment dramatically raises the legal threats facing the divisive ex-leader that are applauded by his opponents but denounced as political persecution by his supporters. Last year, Federal Police accused Bolsonaro of attempting to sneak in diamond jewelry reportedly worth $3 million and selling two luxury watches. Police said in August that Bolsonaro received cash from the nearly $70,000 sale of two luxury watches he received as gifts from Saudi Arabia. Brazil requires its citizens arriving by plane from abroad to declare goods worth more than $1,000 and, for any amount above that exemption, pay a tax equal to 50% of their value.