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HomeForeignBrazil's Ex-President Faces Charges Of Over $1.2m Jewel Sale

Brazil’s Ex-President Faces Charges Of Over $1.2m Jewel Sale

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Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro benefited from an illegal scheme to sell $1.2m (£937,000) in jewellery and other luxury gifts given to his government, police investigators say.

It comes after Brazil’s Federal Police last week recommended charging him with crimes including money-laundering over undeclared jewellery gifted between 2019 and 2022.

The latest police report states that officials had “acted to divert” expensive gifts to Bolsonaro from foreign governments. The officials then sought to sell the items for “the illicit enrichment of the then President”.

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The far-right politician has claimed that cases against him are politically motivated.

The report submitted to the Supreme Federal Court on Monday says that cash raised from such sales was paid to the former President “without using the formal banking system”.

Prosecutors have been given 15 days to decide whether to formally charge Bolsonaro.

The case centres on allegations that he tried to illegally import and keep millions of dollars’ worth of jewellery given to him and his wife by Saudi Arabia in 2019.

The jewels were impounded by Brazilian customs officials when a member of Bolsonaro’s entourage tried to bring them into the country in 2021.

The police report says the jewellery included Rolex watches and Patek Phillipe watches, as well as diamond pieces from luxury brand Chopard.

Bolsonaro’s team later returned some of the jewellery once news of the case was reported, it added.

The former President’s lawyer, Paulo Cunha, posted on social media that heads of state “have no direct or indirect influence” on what happens to official gifts.

 

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