Released tapes implicate Brazil’s President Temer in corruption scandal

Brazil

Released tapes implicate Brazil's President Temer in corruption scandal

A bombshell report reveals recorded telephone calls that implicate Brazilian President Michel Temer and others in a long-running corruption scandal. The alleged evidence is now in the hands of Brazil’s Supreme Court.

CGTN’s Paulo Cabral reports from Brasilia.

Released tapes implicate Brazil's President Temer in corruption scandal

Released tapes implicate Brazil's President Temer in corruption scandal

A bombshell report reveals recorded telephone calls that implicate Brazilian President Michel Temer and others in a long-running corruption scandal. The alleged evidence is now in the hands of Brazil’s Supreme Court. CGTN’s Paulo Cabral reports from Brasilia.

Security around the Palacio do Planalto, the seat of Brazil’s presidency, was reinforced Thursday. They are preparing for protests against President Michel Temer.

A newspaper reported that Temer was caught on tape discussing hush money for jailed former speaker of the house Eduardo Cunha. The recordings were allegedly made by Joesley Batista, the owner of JBS – Brazil’s largest producer and exporter of meat.

President Temer called the media to reaffirm his innocence and vehemently reject calls for his resignation.

“The investigation requested by the Supreme Court will be in depth and all explanations will be given then. In the supreme court I will demonstrate I had no involvement at all with these facts. I will not resign. I repeat: I will not resign. I know what I have done and I know of the correctness of my actions,” Temer said.

President Temer remains defiant, despite the serious allegations against him. He will have to struggle to maintain support in Brazil’s Congress. Some members of his base are already hinting they’re ready to abandon the government and, among opposition lawmakers, there are strong and direct calls for Temer to go.

Allies of the president in Parliament, however, say the evidence against Temer is sketchy.

“This businessman who made the recordings and allegations became a billionaire thanks to loans he received from previous governments of the Workers Party. So, I feel I have the right not to trust all this and to examine, in more detail, all these tapes, these recordings, before passing a definite judgement,” Carlos Marun of the Brazilian Democratic Movement Party said.

The recordings also implicate senator and former presidential candidate Aecio Neves, who reportedly asked Batista for nearly $600,000 to pay for his defense in the Car Wash Corruption Probe. The police released pictures of the money used in the alleged bribe, and the Supreme Court has suspended Aecio Neves from his Senate seat.