The Brazilian justice today condemned the future environment minister, Ricardo Salles, for an administrative offense related to irregularities in an environmental plan when he was regional secretary.
A judge in Sao Paulo today decided the suspension of Salles' political rights for the next three years, as well as the payment of a fine equivalent to ten salaries as secretary, although the future minister may still appeal the decision.
Salles, 43, was accused by the Public Ministry of misrepresenting in 2016 the environmental protection plans of the Tiete river bank when he was secretary of Environment of the government of Sao Paulo, during the administration of the ex-governor and also ex-presidential candidate social-democrat, Geraldo Alckmin.
According to the Justice, the then secretary "violated the legal norms" to favor the economic interests of the Federation of Industries of Sao Paulo (Fiesp), the most influential employers in Brazil and which was also condemned.
The Prosecutor's Office argues that Salles and Fiesp modified maps prepared by the University of Sao Paulo to benefit companies in the mining sector affiliated with employers, based in the capital of São Paulo.
Salles was the last of the ministers appointed by the president-elect of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, who will take office on January 1, when he will take the witness of the current president, Michel Temer.
The Environmental portfolio was the subject of controversy during the last weeks, as Bolsonaro had thought that it would be eliminated, but then he went back and decided to keep it.
This sector has also been criticized by the president-elect, who came to shuffle the idea of Brazil abandoning the Paris Pact against Climate Change, considering that some of its clauses could attempt against "national sovereignty", although he later clarified that He has not yet made a final decision.