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Folha de S. Paulo: Selective Affinities in Siemens Case

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Conspiracy of silence: Folha buries the lede in report on Siemens cartel scandal.

Source: Portal Vermelho.

  • Berzoini criticizes “manipulation” in Folha story on the “bribery pipeline of the Toucans.”‘

Federal deputy Ricardo Berzoini (PT-SP) today questioned the publication of a Folha de S. Paulo report on a bribery “pipeline” in the São Paulo subway system …. observing that the article “does not cite a single member of the Toucan government.”

In its last two editions, IstoÉ magazine published articles about bribery allegations in the São Paulo subway. Berzoini noted … on his Twitter account … that “the names of no Toucan officials are mentioned.”

IstoÉ, meanwhile, did make very clear its allegation of involvement by governors Geraldo Alckmin, José Serra and  Mario Covas in the bribery and kickback scheme.

The Folha, which published the same information two weeks ago, has since switched to shielding  the officials with covering fire.

“I have never seen anything like it! Is the Folha cooperating with the PSDB?” the lawmaker said.

He returned to the subject  on Monday, but as Berzoini (PT-SP), notes. the S. Paulo daily, ran its its story in the Daily section rather than in the prestigious, front of the book Power section, and ran the story without citing any governor of  São Paulo state by name.

“Folha reports a case of overbilling in the SP subway system but runs it in the Daily Life section.  And it cites the name of not a single Toucan official,” Berzoini wrote on his Twitter account this morning. “I have never seen anything like it! Is the party being protected by the Folha,” he added.

As 247 reported on Saturday, July 27, the Folha, which — curiouser amd curioser — originally broke  the story, has removed its team from the field, without mentioning the episode further.

In today’s story, the Frias family daily reports that Siemens, the contractor that denounced its own participation in a cartel scheme involving S. Paulo mass transit, will return some of the money earned from fraudulent bidding to the public coffers.

In a second story on the case, signed by journalist Catia Seabra, the Folha again spares  Governor Geraldo Alckmin (PSDB) the naming of names.

As the last two cover stories of IstoÉ magazine show, however, the kickback and bribe schemes on subway and metro rail projects, according to an ex-employee of Siemens, was known to state government officials, who also benefited personally.

IstoÉ  says R$ 50 million were diverted during the Alckmin  governments but that money was also diverted under Covas and Serra. The current governor may well be targeted for an impeachment proceeding

In its second report on the case, IstoÉ, based on documents it received, said as much as R$ 425 million were diverted from the São Paulo mass transit system during successive PSDB governments over 20 years, a scheme that relied on the participation of officials and civil servants.

Returning to the questions posed in an article published on Saturday, here on 247, why does the Fola cite not a single Toucan executive by name? And why is Geraldo Alckmin receiving the protection of the mainstream media?