Skip to comments.Brazilian president's brother accused (of influence peddling after crackdown on illegal gambling)
Posted on 06/05/2007 9:51:20 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
BRASILIA, Brazil - Brazil police have formally accused a brother of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of influence peddling after a nationwide crackdown on illegal gambling, the government news agency said Tuesday.
Genival Inacio da Silva's home in the San Bernardo do Campo suburb was searched by authorities Monday as part of a federal police operation that arrested 77 people on charges of smuggling electronic gambling machines and bribing police in Mato Grosso do Sul state.
Police did not say what was seized in Silva's brother's home or elaborate on the motives for the accusation, the official Agencia Brasil said.
A police officer, who would not identify himself because of departmental regulations, said police had requested a temporary arrest order for Silva's brother but a judge turned it down.
A formal accusation is a step in the Brazilian legal process before prosecutors file charges with a judge, who then must determine if the evidence merits indictment for trial.
President Silva denied Tuesday that his brother, known as Vava, is linked to illegal gambling and said he is innocent, Agencia Brasil said.
"I don't believe that Vava has anything to do with anything," Silva said in a statement from India, where he is on an official visit. But, he added, "if there is a court order and his name is on it, have patience, we are all subject to investigation."
Genival da Silva's son, Edson Inacio da Silva, told Globo TV that his father would not comment on the search, and that authorities only removed two papers, which he said were unimportant.
The son said the investigation could be linked to phone calls between his father and one of the men arrested Monday, the Web site of Rio de Janeiro's daily O Globo reported.
The president's brother's lawyer, Benedito Tolosa, said there was nothing in his client's phone calls that could link him to any type of crime or irregularity.
"That will be proven and I will request his name be taken off this investigation," Tolosa told Globo TV.
President Silva confirmed that one of the men arrested Dario Morelli Filho is a friend of the family. Filho on Tuesday was temporarily suspended from his job at the city of Diadema's sanitation department until the investigation is complete.
Associated Press writer Tales Azzoni in Sao Paulo contributed to this report.
This would be Roger Clinton and Billy Carter’s clubbie, yes?