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Brazil's top court halts probe of president's son

AP  |  Sao Paulo 

Brazil's top court said Tuesday it has suspended an investigation into the finances of President Jair Bolsonaro's son, saying the initial steps in the probe hadn't been authorised by a judge.

Rio de Janeiro prosecutors have been investigating 48 deposits made to Senator Flavio Bolsonaro from his former driver Fabricio Queiroz in 2017.

But Supreme Court Chief Justice Jose Dias Toffoli ruled that the government's financial control agency should have gotten judicial authorization before handling data of the senator's finances to investigators.

The ruling is valid until November 21, when a full court session is expected to examine the case.

Bolsonaro denies any wrongdoing.

The far-right politician has said the series of small payments he received from Queiroz came from the sale of real estate and that he did not hide the transaction from authorities.

A former Rio state lawmaker, Bolsonaro was elected senator last year in the same vote that brought his father to Brazil's presidency with a pro-gun and anti-corruption message.

Brazil's financial control agency reported late last year that 74 staffers and former staffers of Rio's state legislature had made suspicious banking transactions.

Queiroz, who worked for the Bolsonaros for many years, saw more than USD 300,000 come in and out of his bank account in only one year, the control body said.

Queiroz said earlier this year those funds come mostly from buying and selling cars.

He also paid USD 6,400 to Michelle Bolsonaro, who became first lady this year. Brazilian President Bolsonaro said that amount was part of a loan he had made to the driver.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, July 17 2019. 00:40 IST