By Lise Alves, Senior Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – Less than a month in her post, Brazil’s new top prosecutor, Raquel Dodge has asked the country’s Supreme Court for permission to obtain testimony from President Michel Temer in an investigation where he is suspected of passive corruption and money laundering. Temer is investigated for allegedly issuing a decree to benefit company Rodrimar.
Dodge wants Temer’s testimony as well as Presidential Palace entry records of those linked to Rodrimar during 2017. The deal is said to have been brokered by former presidential special adviser Rodrigo Rocha Loures.
This is one of Dodge’s first decisions after taking over as Brazil’s top prosecutor and replacing Rodrigo Janot at the beginning of September. She will now be in charge of high profile cases, including those related to the Lava Jato (Car Wash) corruption scandal.
Although Dodge is seen to be more aligned with the Temer Administration, the prosecutor reiterated in her first press interview last week she would move ahead with complaints filed against President Temer by Janot, if the Chamber of Deputies authorized the investigation.
Unlike her predecessor (Janot) who called Temer the ‘head of a criminal organization’, Dodge is adopting a more technical posture to the complaints against Brazil’s political class. She has, however, said she will not dismiss the charges filed by Janot against Temer and his allies. “The Public Ministry must promote justice and promote democracy, watch over the common good and the environment, assure a voice to those who do not have it,” she said.
Her position has been praised by Senate President, Eunício Oliveira, “I think she said exactly what we all expect, that no one is above or below the law,” said Oliveira after the press conference.
Politicians, who are under public scrutiny for deals and negotiations with private companies, now wait for further signs of how Dodge will handle the information given to the Prosecutor’s Office about public officials by those signing plea bargaining agreements with the State.