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Brazil top court authorizes corruption probe into president Temer

[JURIST] The Brazilian Supreme Court [official website] on Thursday authorized a corruption probe into President Michel Temer [BBC profile] and his alleged involvement with the bribery of a potential witness in a major corruption case. Local news sources have cited the court's decision, but the Supreme Court has yet to release a copy [Valor Econômico report, in Portuguese] of the decision itself. Temer has responded that he will not resign and that he welcomes the investigation [Reuters report] so his innocence can be proven.

Brazil has endured tumultuous times as former president Dilma Rousseff was impeached for corruption [JURIST report] last year amidst a time of economic turmoil. Last month Brazil's Supreme Court ordered investigations into eight cabinet ministers [JURIST report] and dozens of lawmakers who are allegedly linked to the country's so-called "car wash" bribery scheme. The investigation was ordered on the tails of an anti-corruption measure that was passed last December by the Brazilian Lower Chamber of Deputies. "Operation Carwash" [JURIST report] allows individuals who are subject to prosecution to seek criminal consequences against their prosecutors and judges if the officials abuse their powers. "Operation Carwash" was passed as charges have been filed against some of Brazil's most powerful politicians, including former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva [JURIST report]. In late September former finance minister Antonio Palocci was arrested [JURIST report]. In November Rousseff's lawyers filed documents [JURIST report] with the Superior Electoral Court in Brazil alleging that Temer was involved with bribery.

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