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President Temer's Name Is Cited 43 Times in Plea Bargain of Odebrecht Executive

12/12/2016 - 14h41

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LETÍCIA CASADO
RUBENS VALENTE
CAMILA MATTOSO
DÉBORA ÁLVARES
FROM BRASÍLIA

President Michel Temer's name showed up 43 times in a document based on the plea bargain of Cláudio Melo Filho, former Vice President of Institutional Relations at construction company Odebrecht.

The Chief of Staff, Eliseu Padilha, is mentioned 45 times and Moreira Franco, Secretary for Partnerships and Investments in Temer's government, is mentioned 34 times.

Former minister Geddel Vieira Lima, who resigned recently appears in 67 sections.

The leader of the Government in Congress (PMDB-RR), referred to as the "front man" in the negotiations with the construction company in Congress, is mentioned 105 times in the report, a preliminary file, which Folha had access to, and which the former executive will cite in testimony to Lava Jato (Car Wash investigation) authorities.

According to Melo Filho, President Temer worked "indirectly" in raising financial funds for the PMDB, but had a "relevant" role in 2014, when, according to Melo, he requested R$ 10 million (US$ 2,94 million) from Marcelo Odebrecht for the electoral campaign during a dinner in the Jaburu Palace (the official residence of the Vice-President) in May of 2014.

According to the plea-bargainer, Temer commissioned Padilha to conduct operations for payments for the campaign.

The minister, says the former executive, took care of the distribution of R$ 4 million (US$ 1,18 million) of the R$10 million: "He was the representative chosen by Michel Temer - a fact indicated by the trust shown between the two -, who received and determined delivery of the payments made under the pretext of the campaign and requested by Michel Temer. This fact showed his political weight and importance, especially when looked at in light of the amount of the payment made, on the order of R$4 million".

"We arrived at the Jaburu Palace and were received by Eliseu Padilha. Since Michel Temer hadn't arrived yet, we stayed making small talk in a room to the right for who is entering the residence from the main entrance. I believe that this room is a library", said the plea bargainer, who goes on to provide details about the dinner.

"After Michel Temer arrived, we sat down on the veranda in black leather chairs with aluminum bases. At dinner, I believe that due to the importance of the PMDB and the fact that it included the Brazilian Vice President who was also the President of the party itself, Marcelo Odebrecht determined that a payment in the amount of R$10 million would be made", he says.

According to the plea-bargainer, "the current President of Brazil also used his agent to achieve his personal interests, like the case involving the payments that I participated in, carried out by Eliseu Padilha".

The plea bargainer said that he was introduced to Temer by Geddel in August of 2005 at a birthday party for his father.

When referring to Minister Padilha, he declared that today's Minister "acts as the very agent of Michel Temer and made it clear on many occasions that he spoke in his name", said Melo Filho.

"Eliseu Padilha concentrated his financial fund collections in this PMDB political nucleus for subsequent internal transfers", he declared.

The relationship between the four PMDB party chiefs is very strong according to the plea-bargainer, "which gives weight to requests made by them (ministers), because you know that a corresponding request made in exchange (by the company) will be attended to by Michel Temer as well".

"Geddel Vieira Lima also had influence inside the group, interacting with private interests to respond to their requests in exchange for payments", the plea-bargainer said.

Melo Filho declared that he "vigorously" defended requests for payment made by Geddel from Odebrecht "as retribution" for the fact that the former minister had approached other leadership groups.

Regarding Jucá, he declared that an "example" of his power is "shown by the fact the Senator's cabinet is always busy and frequented by private individuals interested in his strategic interactions".

All of those cited have denied any irregularities related to Odebrecht.

Translated by LLOYD HARDER

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