Brazil court rules against president on government accounting practices News
Brazil court rules against president on government accounting practices

[JURIST] Brazil’s Federal Accounts Court (TCU) [official website, in Portuguese] on Wednesday determined [press release, in Portuguese] that President Dilma Rousseff’s government accounting practices were illegal. Rousseff’s administration allegedly [Al Jazeera report] took out unauthorized loan money from state banks to cover budget shortfalls. The ruling will be sent to congress, and her opponents may use the ruling to attempt to impeach her. It could also open an investigation into her presidential campaign, as she is also accused of misusing funds to get elected. If the court finds serious irregularities in the handling of campaign funds it could invalidate [BBC report] her most recent election, but experts believe a new election is unlikely because of the amount of time it would require to investigate. Rousseff’s critics also believe she received large donations from Petrobas [corporate website], an oil company involved in a national scandal for allegedly exploiting companies that invested over USD $2 billion.

Brazil has struggled with corruption in politics and business in recent years. Last month a Brazil court sentenced [JURIST report] former treasurer of the country’s governing Worker’s Party Joao Vaccari Neto to 15 years and four months in jail for charges stemming from his connection to the Petrobras corruption scandal. Vaccari was found guilty of corruption, money laundering and conspiracy, having accepted at least USD $1 million in bribes from the oil company. Earlier in September the Federal Supreme Court of Brazil banned [JURIST report] corporate entities from providing funding to political candidates in the future in an attempt to prevent further corruption, calling the practice unconstitutional. In August Brazil’s attorney general brought charges [JURIST report] against Eduardo Cunha, current speaker of the lower house of congress, and former president now senator Fernando Collor de Mello, who served as president of Brazil from 1990-92.