Judge Orders to Release Geddel Even Without Electronic Ankle

Judge Ney Bello, of the Federal Regional Court of the 1st Region, ruled that former minister Geddel Vieira Lima be released even without an electronic ankle brace. He ordered that the equipment be placed when Geddel arrives in Salvador, where he will be sentenced to house arrest. On this Thursday(13), the Federal Public Ministry made a new request for arrest of the former minister. Ney Bello notified the Federal Police in Bahia about the decision and also the Federal Court of Brasília, which had determined the arrest.

The judge made the decision after being informed about the lack of electronic anklets in the Federal District, which had been preventing the transfer of the former minister to Salvador. On Wednesday(12), Ney Bello authorized Geddel to leave the Papuda prison in Brasília, and to carry out house arrest. The judge also ruled that Geddel could not have contact with others investigated and should use electronic anklet.

The Federal District government has reported that it has no anklets because the contract to supply the equipment was recently signed.

Suspicion of obstruction of justice

One of the closest politicians to President Michel Temer, Geddel was arrested by the Federal Police(PF) earlier this month in Salvador, on suspicion of obstruction of justice. Two days after the arrest, the former minister of the Secretariat of Government (political articulation) was transferred to the Federal District. He is currently being held in the ward for prison inmates who have a college degree, the same one in which the former deputy and former special adviser to the Planalto Rodrigo Rocha Loures(PMDB-PR) was arrested.

Last Thursday(6), at Geddel’s custody session at the 10th Federal Court of Justice in Brasília, Judge Vallisney de Souza Oliveira had denied the defense’s request that the former minister be allowed to be held under house arrest with the use of Ankle support. At the time, he wept before the judge. Geddel was arrested on suspicion of disrupting the investigation of Operation Cui Bono, which investigates alleged fraud in the release of credit from the Federal Savings Bank.

The investigation focuses on the period in which Geddel was the vice president of Caixa. At the time, he assumed the position at the top of the public bank by appointment of the PMDB, who was a member of the PT in the federal government. The investigation of Geddel’s involvement with the irregularities committed at Caixa was motivated by text messages recorded on a cell phone device seized at the home of then deputy Eduardo Cunha(PMDB-RJ), who is being held in Curitiba by Operation Lava Jato.(AG)