Brazil Opposition Leader Neves Faces Possible Corruption Probe

Brazil’s chief prosecutor has asked the Supreme Court to authorize a corruption probe into Senator Aecio Neves, the country’s leading opposition figure.

Public Prosecutor Rodrigo Janot said in a statement that he wants to investigate Neves for possible corruption and money laundering in relation to influence peddling and kickbacks at state-run power utility Furnas, which operates in the senator’s home state of Minas Gerais. Janot asked for a hearing within 90 days.

Neves, who heads the Brazilian Social Democracy Party and was runner-up in the 2014 presidential race, said the allegations against him will be proven false, according to a statement published on his party’s website.

A two-year corruption scandal involving kickbacks at state companies has rocked Brazil’s political establishment, leading to the imprisonment of company executives and politicians and fueling an impeachment process against President Dilma Rousseff. Many of the millions of people who demonstrated against Rousseff in recent months have also demanded Vice President Michel Temer step down. Neither one is under investigation for graft.

Janot also asked the Supreme Court to consider new evidence in relation to existing inquiries into several members of Temer’s Brazilian Democratic Movement Party, according to news service G1. Under Brazilian law, the high court must authorize any formal investigation into a member of Congress.

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