I was leafing idly through the news coverage of Operation Car Wash — a megascandal with dozens of suspects of operating illegally inside Petrobras — thinking of doing a coverage timeline of the scandal, when I came across a surprising statement.
TV Globo said that its sources did not confirm the version published by Veja, and described the Folha article as “distorted.”
It is very rare to see these particular establishment media outlets criticizing one another in this way. Normally, stories like this are handled as a three-man tag-team match.
According to Valor, however, the naming of politicians involved in the case will not occur until February — Ash Wednesday, when people finally get back to work.
A tropical W$J or FT in incubation, Valor has published as a joint venture with O Globo and the Folha de S. Paulo — odd bedfellows — since May 2000. With the demise of the Gazeta Mercantil, it represents a relative concentration of the market shared with Brasil Econômico — a cousin to the Rio daily O Dia — and the business pages of the Estado de S. Paulo, along with the weekly Exame (Abril).
Bloomberg, Reuters. AFP, Yahoo News and others add a foreign flavor to the mix. The flow of information from various sources cannot but encourage the market observer.
Rumor and leakage in the Petrobras case do appear to have died down since mid-December as defendants — and officers of the court, including the federal police — honor the gag order, in the case of defendants on pain of losing their plea deal, and leaky civil servants suffering administrative punishment.
- Car Wash | Big Brother Is Watching
- Nassif on Car Wash | The Tipping Point?
- Watergate Braziliense: The Leaky Police on the Leaky Police
Source: CartaCapital (October 30, 2014):
Correction to Youssef deposition is a “lie,” attorney says.
Attorney Antonio Augusto Figueiredo Basto, coordinator of the defense of the black-market currency trader Alberto Youssef, one of the key witnesses in the so-called Car Wash case involving corruption at Petrobras, denied in an interview with daily Valor Econômico that on October 22, a correction to the testimony given by Yousseff the previous day had been submitted.
On October 29, O Globo published an article stating that the federal police suspected that the statements by Yousseff, to the effect that Lula and Dilma [would have, could have, should have, might well have] knew [known] about Petrobras scheme corruption schemes, were “stimulated” by campaign funds.
That is a straight, but opaque, translation, but I am intrigued as to its meaning.
“On October 22, nothing involving the terms of the plea deal was discussed. That is a lie. I defy anyone to prove that the plea deal was discussed on Wednesday. There was no correction. Either the source lied or this was reported in pure bad faith,” Basto told Valor, regarding the Globo report. Basto says the defense wants a “rigorous investigation” of the leak.
According to O Globo, the PF are investigating the leak, and suspect that it came from the someone on the criminal defense team. According to the Rio daily, Youssef submitted to an interrogation on October 21 and did not cite Lula or Dilma. On Wednesday October 22, Globo says, someone from the Youssef legal team petitioned to “present a correction to the previous statements.”
During the following interrogation, Globo says, the PF “asked who else, besides the persons already named, knew of fraud at Petrobras? ” Youssef, according to Globo, said he “believed, given the dimensions of the case, that there was no way that Lula and Dilma would not have known.”
Basto told Valor said he had no relations with the PSDB. For a little more than a year, between 2011 and 2012, he was a board member at Sanepar, the state sanitation company of Paraná, during the administration of Beto Richa (PSDB). “I have no party affiliation and no desire to have one. PSDB, PT, no party at all,” Basto said.
The wife of the judge in the case is a “PSDB-affiliated” lawyer, some say. Checking.
According to Valor, Youssef said that “in informal conversations with attorneys and investigation,” he found it “very difficult to believe” that the federal president would not have knowledge of the scheme, which embezzled billions from Petrobras. Again according to Valor, Youssef supposedly said that “everyone in the top echelons knew” about the fraud. Youssef, Valor notes, did not cite names or present evidence.”
Globo to the Ethical Rescue
Together with Veja magazine, the daily Folha de S.Paulo published a report saying that Youseff had named Lula and Dilma. TV Globo said that its sources did not confirm the version published by Veja, and described the Folha article as “distorted.”
O Estado de S.Paulo said that Lula may have ordered a payment to a publicity firm, Muranno Marketing/Brasil, which is involved in the corruption scheme. “Everyone I worked with said that everyone in top management knew, that the fraudulent scheme was free to operate.”
Muranno Marketing, and many others, are hard to locate with the accessibility tools provided by the states and feds — the official diaries (DO), mainly. I wonder if things are easier for the journalist in Uruguay? I was able to find the name Muranno in the S. Paulo state DO, but little information. If I remember rightly, there is a registration number that can unlock other data. BUt I could be wrong.
I would like to take a drive from Sampa to Buenos Aires via Chile and Uruguay someday.
(By José Antonio Lima)
(Excerpt & translation: C. Brayton)
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