Michel Temer, the former president of Brazil, was arrested yesterday accused of leading a "criminal organization" involved in money laundering and embezzlement.
The latest high-profile target of Brazil’s Lava Jato corruption probe, Temer is also accused of having taken bribes, including one related to the construction of a nuclear power plant in southern Rio de Janeiro state, Deutsche Welle reports.
He is the third consecutive former president of Brazil to be charged under Lava Jato, following Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and his successor, Dilma Rousseff.
According to Deustche Welle, Temer is the subject of 10 separate inquiries.
His former minister for mining and energy, Moreira Franco, was also arrested, while his chief of staff, Eliseu Padilha, is also said to be a person of interest.
Taking office as the Lava Jato probe was rocking the country in 2016, Temer was replaced by current president Jair Bolsonaro.
Leading to the imprisonment of dozens of officials and executives, including senior politicians, the probe revealed that construction companies formed a cartel in 2003 to overcharge Petrobras for building contracts, and then paid some of the illicit cash to Petrobras executives and politicians from several parties.
Image: Michel Temer in 2017 (Rogério Melo/PR/CC BY 2.0)