The First Panel of the Federal Supreme Court (STF) formed a majority to reject an appeal by the government leader in the Chamber, Ricardo Barros (PP-PR), to remove the delegate from the Federal police that investigates his management at the Ministry of Health, between 2016 and 2018. Barros appealed to the STF alleging partiality of the delegate José Versiani, responsible for the Operation Feet of Clay, which investigates millionaire losses to the folder in the purchase of high-cost medicines. The parliamentarian’s defense maintained that he feared being arrested by Versiani.
The argument did not sensitize the ministers in the virtual trial, however. The habeas corpus rapporteur, Alexandre de Moraes, who had already denied the PP deputy’s request monocratically, maintained his position in the collective trial, in a vote followed by ministers Cármen Lúcia and Rosa Weber. There are still the votes of ministers Luís Roberto Barroso and Dias Toffoli.
Moraes considered that there is no risk of “illegal embarrassment” to Ricardo Barros because he is not among those investigated by the inquiry. “The allegations brought in this petition do not qualify, in all evidence, as a kind of illegal constraint that, even remotely, may jeopardize the freedom of movement”, said the rapporteur minister. He also reaffirmed that the legislation does not allow allegations of suspicion by police authorities in investigative acts.
The defense’s argument that the delegate has no impartiality to carry out the investigation against the government leader is based on a statement by deputy Luís Miranda (União Brasil-DF), Ricardo Barros’ disaffected, according to which Versiani expressed his intention to arrest Barros .
In the request for reconsideration to Moraes and the First Class, as VEJA showed, the lawyers also linked the PF delegate to the former Minister of Justice and Public Security Sergio Moro, named in the petition as a “political opponent” of Ricardo Barros. Barros’ defense recalled that Moro was responsible for appointing Versiani to a position under his management.
Operation Feet of Clay
Launched in September 2021, the PF operation aims to favor the company Global Gestão em Saúde during Barros’s passage through the portfolio, which would have left a loss of 20 million reais in the acquisition of high-cost medicines.
Global is controlled by businessman Francisco Emerson Maximiano, the same owner of Precise Medicamentos, which in the Bolsonaro government would be the intermediary of a contract with the Ministry of Health for the purchase of the Indian vaccine Covaxin. The acquisition of the immunizer against Covid-19 ended up suspended and canceled on suspicion of irregularities, investigated by the CPI, which investigated the relationship between Ricardo Barros and Maximiano’s companies.
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