Candidate for federal deputy Clébio Lopes Pereira (União Brasil-RJ), known as “Jacaré”, is the subject of an arrest warrant by the MP-RJ (Public Ministry of Rio de Janeiro) within the scope of the third phase of the Apanthropia operation, launched today.
In addition to Jacaré – who even declared to the TSE (Superior Electoral Court) a total assets of R$ 15.9 million, of which R$ 5.1 in cash -, Fábio Alves Ramos, former chief of staff of the mayor of Itatiaia; Silvano Rodrigues da Silva, alias “Vaninho”, councilor and former interim mayor of Itatiaia; Julio Cesar da Silva Santiago, alias “Julinho”, and Édnei da Conceição Cordeiro, former secretary of Social Assistance and Human Rights of Itatiaia.
Search and seizure warrants are also executed against ten other people accused of being part of a criminal organization responsible for various crimes against the public administration.
The orders were issued by the 1st Criminal Court Specialized in Organized Crime of the TJ-RJ (Court of Justice of Rio de Janeiro), which also ordered the removal of five councilors and an alternate from the functions they held in the Municipal Council of Itatiaia.
The report of UOL try to contact the candidate, city hall and City Council, to send a position on the operation. If there is a response, the text will be updated.
Criminal organization in Itatiaia
According to the MP-RJ, the accused formed a criminal organization with the objective of obtaining advantages through injuries to the public administration, with the practice of crimes of embezzlement, embezzlement, concussion, passive corruption, active corruption, illegal direct hiring, fraud in bidding or contract, money laundering, among others.
The investigations show that the administration of the municipality of Itatiaia was “sold” by interim mayors to “investors” in Rio de Janeiro and the metropolitan region, forming a criminal organization composed of public agents who received amounts to delegate the management of the city hall and omit themselves in the inspections under the responsibility of the City Council.
People would have been paid to assume the management of the municipality, focusing on the diversion of public resources, including from the appointment of “ghost” officials and fraud in contracts and bids, to recover the “investment” made.
Candidate Jacaré would be one of the leaders of the criminal organization, responsible for the idealization of the project and primary agreement with the local public administration; Fábio, considered Clébio’s right-hand man; Imberê and Silvano, the latter two as heads of the Executive Power at different and consecutive moments, who acted as instruments for materializing the criminal structure in the local public machine.
Julio Cesar de Andrade Santiago – who, according to the MP-RJ, has close links with Clébio and Fábio – would be an active figure in the performance of business activities conducted simultaneously by the criminal organization. Other members, occupying positions of control in the local public activity, would have the mission to implement in practice the illicit actions capable of generating profit for the gang.
Among them, Édnei da Conceição Cordeiro, as former secretary of Social Assistance and Human Rights of Itatiaia; Raphael Figueiredo Pereira, former Secretary of Health of Itatiaia; Kézia Macedo dos Santos Aleixo, former Secretary of Education of Itatiaia; Gustavo Ramos da Silva, former Secretary of Administration of Itatiaia; Fernando José Daemon Barros, former Attorney General of Itatiaia and Marcos Eduardo Noronha Fontes, former Secretary of Planning and Housing of Itatiaia.
Corruption in the Legislature
The MP-RJ also points out that, among the accused, there is a core of public servants who are part of the City Council and act to maintain the organization’s criminal strategies, especially not monitoring and not repressing irregularities practiced by the Executive, in addition to diverting state resources. .
This same criminal organization would have implemented the same corruption scheme in other municipalities.
The first phase of the Apanthropía operation was carried out in April 2021 and arrested the then Secretary of Health of Itatiaia, Marcus Vinicius Rebello Gomes, and four others accused of being part of a criminal organization responsible for harming the treasury, initially in a contract to supply equipment of personal protection to combat covid-19.
The scheme would have caused a loss of approximately R$ 3 million, due to overpricing, overbilling and failure to deliver the goods paid for.
The second phase was launched in June 2021, to comply with the removal order of the interim Mayor of Itatiaia, Imberê Moreira Alves; his chief of staff, Fábio Alves Ramos, and the municipal secretaries of Health, Raphael Figueiredo Pereira, of Education, Kézia Macedo dos Santos Aleixo, and of Administration, Gustavo Ramos da Silva, for acts of administrative improbity. The orders were issued by the Single Court of Itatiaia, which also issued search and seizure warrants at addresses linked to the mayor and in the offices of other public agents, as well as an order to block the assets of those investigated.