Crime & Justice

Brazilian police raid homes of Bolsonaro’s son in money laundering case

Brasilia, Aug 24 (EFE).- Brazilian police on Thursday searched two homes linked to 25-year-old Jair Renan Bolsonaro, the youngest son of former president Jair Bolsonaro, as part of an investigation into fraud and money laundering.

The Brasilia Civil Police said in a statement that the searches were part of an operation to “repress the practice” of alleged “crimes against public trust and illegal association, as well as crimes against the public treasury”.

In Thursday’s operation, agents searched an apartment in Brasilia and another in the town of Balneario Camboriu, in the southern state of Santa Catarina, and confiscated a mobile phone, documents and a hard drive.

Two suspects have been arrested in connection with the alleged scheme, but no warrant was issued for the former president’s son.

In 2021, Jair Renan was investigated for alleged influence peddling and money laundering over alleged bribes paid by businessmen seeking government contracts when his father was in power, but the case was dropped last year for lack of evidence.

Admar Gonzaga, the lawyer representing the youngest Bolsonaro, confirmed Thursday’s raids to local media and said his client was “surprised.”

Meanwhile, Senator Flavio Bolsonaro, one of his older brothers, criticized the operation, saying that Jair Renan “doesn’t have the slightest capacity to do what the authorities are suggesting”.

“It strikes me because this is a person who doesn’t have a penny to his name and is being investigated for money laundering,” he told reporters.

The crimes being investigated are fraud, falsification of documents, tax evasion and money laundering through shell companies with the ultimate aim of hiding assets.

The operation came on the same day that the former Brazilian president was hospitalized in Sao Paulo for tests related to a stabbing he suffered in 2018.

The far-right leader also faces problems with the Brazilian justice system, as he is being investigated in several cases, including the attempted coup of January 8, when thousands of his supporters violently invaded the headquarters of the three branches of government.

On a separate legal front, the former president was disqualified for eight years by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal for spreading falsehoods and attacking the electoral system and democratic institutions. EFE

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