| 8 December 2023, Friday |

Brazil: Ex-president Jair Bolsonaro’s home raided in vaccine records probe

As part of an inquiry into his Covid vaccination records, the Brazilian police conducted a search of former President Jair Bolsonaro’s residence on Wednesday (May 3) and confiscated his mobile phone. According to Reuters, the investigation may provide insight into how Bolsonaro, who had previously stated he would never receive a Covid vaccine, was recorded as vaccinated in health records made available to the public in February.

The police said they were investigating “false data” allegedly added to a national Covid database between November 2021 and December 2022, when Bolsonaro was Brazil’s president.

Confirming the raid on his home, Bolsonaro reiterated he was never vaccinated against Covid, and denied any role in allegedly forging documents.

“For my part, there was nothing falsified. I didn’t take the vaccine. Period,” Bolsonaro said.

I did not take the vaccine, it was a personal decision of mine after reading the Pfizer package insert. They took a photo of my wife’s vaccine card and she had the Janssen vaccine in the United States and my 12-year-old daughter Laura also did not get the vaccine. I am surprised by a search operation and seizure for such a reason and I have nothing more to say,” the former president said.

“My (mobile phone) has been seized, my phone has no password, I will make that very clear. I have nothing to hide. Not only about the vaccination card, I have nothing to hide about anything. It would be good if we had a democratic country where we could discuss all subjects. There are subjects that are forbidden to talk about in Brazil and one of them is about the vaccine,” he added.

In a statement, the federal police said that they were serving 16 search warrants and six preventive arrest warrants in Brasilia and Rio de Janeiro as part of the operation but did not disclose the names of those targeted.

However, two people familiar with developments told Reuters that the police arrested Mauro Cid and Max Guilherme, personal assistants to Bolsonaro as the president who stayed on as his aides when he stepped down.

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