Ricardo Salles, the controversial Brazil minister of environment announced his decision to step down on Wednesday. Currently, there is an investigation being conducted after he allegedly obstructed the police from probing illegal logging activity in the Amazon.
Ricardo Salles Allegedly Deeply Involved In The Rampant Deforestation
Ricardo Salles had become the environment minister in 2019. Since then, the rate of deforestation in the rainforest of the Amazon has been extremely high. This had led to several investigations after irregularities were alleged. The public, as a result, had been putting him under pressure asking for his resignation.
In Wednesday’s news conference, Ricardo Salles said that he is making the decision to unify the efforts, interests, and desires of Brazil. He then reported that the resignation had been duly accepted by President Bolsonaro.
The Supreme Court of Brazil had started inquiring into allegations against Ricardo Salles by the federal police. The order from the court followed a lawsuit filed by Alexandre Saraiva, the state of Amazonas’ police chief. In it, Saraiva claimed that Salles had tried to disrupt an investigation while resulted in Brazil’s biggest illegal timber seizure.
Salles is also under investigation for charges of administrative advocacy, hindering environmental inspection, as well as hinder a criminal offense investigation associated with a criminal organization. The federal police of Brazil are also looking into allegations of Salles using his position and weakening timber exportation inspections conducted by the IBAMA.
Ricardo Salles has denied all wrongdoings. Jair Bolsonaro, the President, and Salles have been subjected to immense criticism for their policies on the environment. Once considered a world model for carbon emissions and deforestation, everything has reversed since Bolosonaro took charge. Both have increased rampantly since 2019 when Bolsonaro took charge.
Salles was also convicted of making alterations to environmental maps to help mining companies in 2019.