The Second Panel of the Federal Supreme Court ended this Tuesday (31) an inquiry investigating alleged illegal transfers to Deputy Aécio Neves (PSDB-MG) by Odebrecht during his campaign for the presidency in 2014.
Aécio Neves was investigated on suspicion of active and passive corruption and also money laundering. According to whistleblowers from Operation Lava Jato, the amount transferred was to be used in the toucan’s campaign for the Presidency of the Republic in 2014.
After the trial, the deputy’s defense issued a statement in which it stated that an investigation “cannot go on indefinitely without any evidence” and regretted “the exposure time to which he was subjected due to false narratives” (read the full text at the end of this article).
The ministers discussed an appeal by the Attorney General’s Office against the decision of minister Gilmar Mendes, rapporteur, who had sent the case to the Electoral Court and a request from the senator’s defense for the investigation to be closed.
Mendes voted to close the inquiry. The minister pointed out that the investigations lasted for more than four years without advancing any elements of evidence and that the facts were based only on winning denunciations by Odebrecht employees and, as he argued, there was a contradiction between the testimonies.
“In the case under analysis, the preliminary investigation and the steps still pending are incapable of minimally corroborating the investigative hypothesis, in order to justify the continuation of the investigations”, the minister wrote in the decision.
“For these reasons, I understand that the occurrence of a situation of flagrant illegality, capable of justifying the granting of habeas corpus de officio. Otherwise, we will have the perpetuation of an investigation doomed to failure capable only of causing undue damage and embarrassment to the appeal”, said Mendes.
Gilmar Mendes’ vote was followed by Minister Nunes Marques, prevailing the understanding to lock the process.
“The declination of competence in an investigation doomed to failure would only represent delaying the inevitable, violating the right to a reasonable duration of the process and the dignity of the human person,” stated Nunes Marques.
Minister Edson Fachin voted for the referral of the case to the Federal Court, as he understood that the evidence was for crimes of corruption and money laundering.
Minister Ricardo Lewandowksi voted in favor of the process being referred to the Electoral Court.
Note from the defense of Aécio Neves
After the judgment by the Second Panel of the Federal Supreme Court, the defense of Aécio Neves released the following note:
Defense Note by Deputy Aécio Neves
After 4 years of investigations, it was proven that there was no illicit act committed by Deputy Aécio Neves, who only regrets the time of exposure to which he was subjected based on false narratives made without proof by whistleblowers in search of his own acquittal.
The filing decision followed the understanding consolidated in the STF that an investigation cannot go on indefinitely without any supporting evidence.