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At Eve of Brazilian Elections Lula’s Aide Resigns Charged with Dirty Campaigning

A special advisor to Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has resigned his post, today, September 18, after being accused of ordering the purchase of a dossier, which would incriminate José Serra, candidate to the government of São Paulo state, and opposition presidential candidate Geraldo Alckmin.

The advisor, Freud Godoy, who was security coordinator in all four Lula’s campaign to the presidency, denied any wrongdoing.  Brazil’s general elections happen October 1st.

The Brazilian federal police arrested Friday, September 15, in São Paulo, Gedimar Passos, charging him with trying to obtain the incriminating documents.

Passos was carrying 1.75 million reais (US$ 820,000) to pay for the dossier when detained by the authorities. He told police that the money had come from the ruling party PT. Later he added that his contact with the Workers Party was someone called Freud.

The information contained in the dossier would implicate Serra and Alckmin in the Sanguessugas (Bloodsuckers) Scheme, a scandal involving dozens of congressmen and mayors in the purchase of overbilled ambulances. 

Together with Passos the federal police also arrested contractor Valdebran Carlos Padilha da Silva, who belongs to the PT’s committee in the state of Mato Grosso.

In Cuiabá, capital of Mato Grosso, the federal police also arrested Luiz Antônio Vedoin, partner of the Planam company (charged with managing the Sanguessugas scheme) and his uncle, Paulo Roberto Dalcol Trevisan. According to the authorities Trevisan was supposed to deliver in São Paulo a dossier containing video tapes, pictures, and other incriminating documents against PSDB politicians.

Godoy told reporters that he met Passos in Brazilian capital Brasí­lia at least four times but denied to have anything to do with the purchase of documents. "I want to see who has any evidence that I did any kind of swindle," he said.

The first time he met the lawyer, he told reporters, was one month ago at the Workers Party (PT) directorate in Brasí­lia. They were then presented to each other. In a second meeting they discussed how to implement a plan to look for wiretappings of the PT committee’s phones. Godoy’s wife, who own a security company, won that contract.

They met another two times, according to Lula’s adviser. Godoy informed that he won’t go back to his job before his name is cleared. He also promised to spontaneously go to the federal police to give them his version of the facts.

Godoy says that the called Lula and told him all the facts he knew. "The president was very worried and wanted to know what was happening," he revealed, adding he tried to reassure the president: "You can sleep peacefully because I have how to prove that I have nothing to do with this."

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