Bolsonaro aide confesses to selling luxurious state gifts
Lt Col Mauro Cid admits to selling Saudi Arabian and Bahraini watches at a Pennsylvania mall and delivering the cash to Jair Bolsonaro.
Jair Bolsonaro's former personal secretary allegedly informed authorities that he turned over tens of thousands of dollars to his former boss after selling two costly watches received as official presents by Brazil's ex-President.
Lt Col Mauro Cid Barbosa, Bolsonaro's aide-de-camp throughout his 2019-23 administration, was freed from police custody on Saturday after reaching a plea agreement.
According to the deal, Cid must submit information about a number of suspected crimes committed under Bolsonaro's government, including an attempted coup plan and a scandal involving the alleged misuse of expensive foreign gifts.
Shortly before his release, Bolsonaro's former right-hand man allegedly submitted a statement to Brazilian federal authorities in which he confessed to selling a Rolex and Patek Philippe watches for $68,000 before giving the money to Bolsonaro in cash.
The watches were gifts from Saudi Arabia and Bahrain and were sold at a Pennsylvania mall.
The controversy involved lavish gifts from Saudi Arabia and Bahrain and first made news three months after Bolsonaro stepped down following his loss of the election last October.
According to Barbosa, Bolsonaro was "worried about his financial life."
According to Veja magazine, Bolsonaro frequently touted an anti-corruption agenda, admiring Donald Trump and daring critics to call him corrupted.
In June, the former Brazilian President barred the far-right nationalist from holding public office until 2030 for his behavior during the 2022 contentious election.
Bolsonaro is not only entangled in scandals but is being investigated by police for his role in the January 8 attacks in Brasilia in an attempt to overturn Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's government.
The former President is being tried by the tribunal on allegations that he abused his position and state media to spread false information about security holes in Brazil's electronic voting system.
During an interview this week, Bolsonaro referred to Barbosa as "a good boy" and denied playing any role in the insurgency.