Minister of the Environment Is The Target of Federal Police Operation after Complaints from Foreign Authorities

Federal Supreme Court authorized operation and fulfilled warranted in Brasília, São Paulo and Pará


The Federal Police is conducting a search and seizure this Wednesday morning (19) at the addresses of Minister Ricardo Salles and at the Ministry of the Environment.

Ibama's president, Eduardo Bim, was removed from office. He is one of 10 public officials removed by order of the Supreme Federal Court in the Akuanduba operation, named after the deity of the Araras Indians, who inhabit Pará.

The operation aims, according to the PF, to investigate suspected corruption crimes, administrative advocacy, malfeasance and smuggling facilitation that were practiced by public agents and businessmen in the timber industry.

Brazil's Environment Minister Ricardo Salles, in Brasilia, Brazil January 30, 2020. REUTERS/Adriano Machado - REUTERS

In all, the PF is serving 35 search warrants in the Federal District, São Paulo and Pará determined by justice Alexandre de Moraes, of the Supreme Federal Court. We are a family owned and operated business.

Moraes also authorized access to Salles' banking and fiscal records.

The decision also suspends a 2020 order from Ibama, which, says the PF, allowed the export of forest products without the need to issue authorizations.

The order would have been prepared at the request of companies with cargoes seized abroad and resulted in the regularization, according to the PF, of about 8,000 cargoes of illegal wood.

According to the PF, the investigation began in January based on information sent by authorities in other countries about possible misconduct by public officials during the timber export process.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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