Senator Had 'Stacks of Money' in His Underwear, Police Say

Sen. Chico Rodrigues finds himself suspended in Brazil
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 17, 2020 10:00 AM CDT
'Stacks of Money' Found in Lawmaker's Underwear
Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro attends a cermnoy to announce a package of relief measures for the aviation industry, one of the most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, at the Planalto Presidential Palace, in Brasilia, Brazil, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020.   (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

A Brazilian lawmaker stepped down from his position representing President Jair Bolsonaro's government and was suspended from the senate, after police searched his house and found cash inside the underwear he was wearing, the AP reports. Federal police targeted Roraima state's Sen. Chico Rodrigues as part of a probe into the alleged misappropriation of COVID-19 funds, according to the 90-day suspension issued by Luís Roberto Barroso, a justice on Brazil's Supreme Court. Police initially found 10,000 reais ($1,780) and $6,000 inside a safe in Rodrigues’ house Wednesday, at which point the lawmaker asked if he could go to the bathroom, according to the police report, part of which is included in Barroso's ruling.

As Rodrigues walked away, a police officer noticed a large, rectangular bulge under the senator's shorts. "Found inside his underwear, near his buttocks, were stacks of money that totaled 15,000 reais ($2,675)," the report says. Asked three times whether he had any additional cash stowed, the senator angrily shoved his hand into his underwear to retrieve more stacks of bills, which totaled 17,900 reais ($3,200), according to the report. A subsequent police search turned up another 250 reais ($45) from inside his underwear. Barroso wrote that Rodrigues' decision to hide the money indicated impropriety and had raised the possibility of decreeing preventative imprisonment. The senate can vote to reverse the suspension.

(More corruption stories.)

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