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Brazil lower house to vote on Temer bribery charges
August 2, 2017, 7:05 am

Temer says the charges are designed to derail his economic reform plans; he wants to raise taxes and cut public spending [Xinhua]

Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of Parliament, will today vote on yet more corruption charges against President Michel Temer.

In early July, the rapporteur for a Brazilian lower house committee examining a corruption charge against Temer recommended that the body vote to put him on trial.

Two-thirds of the lower house’s 513 members must approve the charge against Temer for it to move to the Supreme Court. If the top court accepts the charge, he will be ousted from the presidency.

If Temer survives the vote, he will likely remain intact until presidential elections in 2018.

The lower house vote comes after Prosecutor General Rodrigo Janot formally charged Temer with accepting $11.47 million in bribes from officials at Brazil’s biggest meatpacker, JBS SA, to cover up corruption within their company.

The officials had offered up the information as part of a plea bargain during an investigation into corruption in the meatpacking industry.

In late June, Temer took to national television to appeal to the Brazilian public and claim his innocence.

In a bitter political irony, Temer now finds himself facing the same type of vote that he forced on his predecessor and former President Dilma Rousseff.

In March, at least 21 major meatpacking companies like Souza Ramos, Transmeat, Seara Alimentos Ltda (owned by JBS) and Peccin based in the southern state of Parana came under investigation.

The investigation alleged that the meat inspection process was fundamentally flawed and that officials in some states were paid by meatpackers to look the other way.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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