The complete list of those responsible for the jewelry scandal could grow in the coming days. Amidst concern about the escalation of the case, former president Jair Bolsonaro (PL) and allies began to assess that more people involved should explain their responsibility for the episode.
Former Bolsonaro advisers began to demand the omission of Célio Faria Junior, who was Bolsonaro’s chief of staff when the diamonds arrived in Brazil, in October 2021, from Saudi Arabia.
He would have omitted himself over the time he held the position. Faria took over in March 2020 — he stayed at the company for two years. Faria’s absence from Bolsonaro in recent days has caused irritation in the nearby core when seeing that Lieutenant Colonel Mauro Barbosa Cid was the only one “fried” with the episode.
Cid, as aide-de-camp, was below Faria in the hierarchy. According to reports in the column, Cid was also responsible for organizing other gifts received by Bolsonaro, such as a rifle, a pistol and some jewelry with niobium brought from Japan.
Faria Júnior is an economist and civil servant from the Navy. He participated in the transition at the end of 2018 and arrived at the Planalto Palace in 2019. His first position was as head of Bolsonaro’s special advisors
At the end of 2020, he was promoted to head of the president’s personal office. Then, in March, he became Minister of the General Secretariat of the Presidency.
Faria is also very close to former Minister Bento Albuquerque, another pivotal figure in the case. He would have presented and suggested the name of the minister to Bolsonaro. The former minister was the one who brought the jewels from Saudi Arabia that were later seized and valued at R$ 16 million and that would be a gift for the former first lady Michelle Bolsonaro.
In the same period, Faria and his wife, economist Vanessa Lima, had a patrimonial and financial leap. In addition to the positions in the Presidency, the couple also managed to obtain three positions as advisers in public companies. The monthly income of the two together increased to R$ 76 thousand gross.
Sought by the column, Faria said that he did not participate in a discussion on the subject and that the problem did not come to him at the time of the government.
“The bureaucratic and protocol issues were handled directly by the responsible sectors. In this case, there is an adjunct office for Historical Documentation that was responsible for dealing with these issues by the personal office. From what I verified after becoming aware of the subject, and now only, the negotiations were given in an official way, in writing, in official documents exchanged between the MME and the adjunct office of Historical Documentation,” said Faria.
How Bolsonaro triggered advisors
According to interlocutors of the former president, Lieutenant Colonel Mauro Cid was called by Bolsonaro in mid-December last year for a conversation and received the mission to rescue a gift from the then Chief Executive who was at the Federal Revenue Service. Then Cid telephoned Julio Cesar Vieira Gomes, a former officer in the Brazilian Navy and then secretary who headed the Federal Revenue Service.
It was only in that conversation, according to Bolsonaro’s allies, that the lieutenant colonel learned that it was a set of jewels. In their version, when the former president asked that the gift be withdrawn, it was not mentioned that it was diamonds that had been presented by the government of Saudi Arabia. Bolsonaro would have simply said that he had “something” for him.
When talking to Gomes, Cid heard that it was a set of jewels. However, according to Bolsonaro’s advisors, no difficulty was mentioned in removing the diamonds.
Cid would have sent letters to the Federal Revenue Service requesting the material and, based on that, he sent someone from his team to Guarulhos on December 29, 2022 to collect it. First Sergeant of the Navy Jairo Moreira da Silva was chosen. The sergeant, however, was barred in the attempt.
Silva even called Cid and the former head of the Internal Revenue Service to try to get the jewels delivered, which did not happen.
In the meantime, an employee received orders from officials in the coordination of the Presidency’s Orders Help to ask the Department of Historical Documentation of the Office of the Presidency of the Republic to enter the diamonds into the system. The information came from the testimony of a servant to the PF, according to the blog of journalist Valdo Cruz, from G1.
The column learned from Bolsonaro advisors that the procedures were accelerated due to the end of the mandate since Bolsonaro traveled to the US on December 30.
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