The Brazilian Supreme Court of Justice (STJ) announced that it has suspended Rio de Janeiro Governor Wilson Witzel from office following reports of alleged corruption.
The STJ on Friday said that Witzel and eight people have been accused of involvement in a corruption scandal, including the Governor’s wife, and the former presidential candidate and current national president of the Christian Social Party (PSC), Pastor Everaldo Pereira, reports Xinhua news agency.
The Attorney General’s Office reported that Witzel and the eight others accused had created an alleged scheme to embezzle funds meant to aid the state against the Covid-19 pandemic.
In May, Witzel and his wife were also the subjects of a police investigation into fraudulent contracts used in the construction of field hospitals.
This operation resulted in the arrest of a former federal deputy and a businessman close to the Witzels.
Rio de Janeiro Lieutenant Governor Claudio Castro, who is also currently under investigation, will take office on a provisional basis.
Witzel was elected governor of Rio de Janeiro in October 2018 after campaigning on an anti-crime and anti-corruption platform.