Brazil’s Newest Congress Scandal, the Bloodsuckers, Involves Ambulances

Brazil’s Federal investigators and the police have unveiled a new scam involving members of the Brazilian Congress. The scheme consisted of kickbacks that became possible when municipalities were allocated funds to purchase ambulances through budget bill riders ("pork" or "earmarks" as this is called in English).

The president of the Chamber of Deputies, Aldo Rebelo (Partido Comunista do Brasil – São Paulo), announced Wednesday, May 10, that the directors of the Lower House (Mesa Diretora) had decided to divide up the 62 deputies accused of being involving in the scandal, popularly known as the "bloodsuckers" scheme or operation, into three groups.

The first group, who seem to have been directly involved in the scheme, will immediately be investigated by the Chamber of Deputies’ commission on suspicious activities (Comissão de Sindicância da Corregedoria da Casa).

A second group, which seems to have been indirectly involved in the scheme, will be put on a kind of standby as investigations continue and more evidence is gathered.

A third group, described by Rebelo as "people whose involvement is open to reasonable doubt," will be examined one-by-one to see if charges against them can be dropped. Rebelo declared that the Corregedoria and other Chamber authorities would treat the issue with caution.

Agência Brasil

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