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President of the Senate Returns Funds Used in Official Flight for Hair Implant

12/24/2013 - 12h29

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FROM BRASILIA

On Monday, December 23, the president of the Senate, Renan Calheiros (PMDB-AL), decided to return the public funds that he used to fly on a Brazilian Air Force (FAB) aircraft from Brasilia to Recife (PE), where he underwent a hair implant.

The decision was made after Calheiros consulted the head of the Air Force to verify if he had committed an "impropriety." In his request to use the aircraft, Calheiros told FAB that the reasons were "work-related." The amount returned was not informed.

His press office didn't explain why he used a FAB aircraft to fly to Recife. Folha's Painel column published on Saturday, December 21, showed that Calheiros used a FAB aircraft to travel on Wednesday, December 18, to Recife, the capital of Pernambuco, where he would undergo a surgery to implant 10,000 hairs on the next day. However, his official schedule on the Senate website didn't show any appointments in Recife.

The act that regulates the use of FAB aircrafts by authorities doesn't call for travels for personal reasons. The rule allows such use for safety, medical or work-related reasons, as well as trips to authorities' permanent residencies.

It establishes that "the transportation of civil authorities for reasons other than these is a severe administrative violation, and the responsible will be subject to the applicable administrative, civil and legal penalties."

It was the second time this year that Calheiros used a FAB aircraft for private purposes. In June, he went to Trancoso (BA) to attend the wedding of the daughter of his colleague, Eduardo Braga (PMDB-AM). After the trip was made public, he returned US$ 13,500 to the federal government.

Translated by THOMAS MUELLO

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