The new deputy director of the Brazilian Intelligence Agency (Abin), Marco Cepik, who took over from Alessandro Moretti, after the installation of an unsustainable climate in the government due to serious suspicions that fell on him in the criminal scandal of the parallel ‘Abin ‘, gave an interview to the Rio newspaper O Globo and spoke, as far as possible, about his impressions regarding the contamination of the agency following the discoveries made in recent days by the Federal Police.
Asked about what is actually known so far in relation to the use of the Abin structure to carry out clandestine smuggling of opponents and critics of the government of former president Jair Bolsonaro, Cepik confirmed several episodes that occurred outside the law and cited cases specific cases in which there is a wealth of evidence.
“There were people operating within Abin and other public bodies, in the police, to advance the president’s agenda in an irregular manner in these bodies. We are talking about the use of tools and procedures in Ramagem management at Abin. But there are also processes at the Federal Highway Police, and at the Federal Police itself. All of this is consistent with the president’s statements at the time, who said he did not trust the Brazilian intelligence system and that he had his intelligence. This network of collaborators of the president [Bolsonaro] It was informal, apparently, but it manifested itself in reports, and some actions that are now coming to light. There is a legitimate concern among citizens regarding this. I hope that the results of the investigations prove or not this investigative hypothesis, and that the facts and conduct of the individuals are investigated and that they are held accountable”, he explained.
The reporter who interviewed him also asked about Bolsonaro’s possible participation, which seems obvious to almost all analysts. Abin’s new number 2 digressed, talking about how the legal processes work to investigate these alleged conducts, but did not mention anything relevant.
“The time of politics and the anxiety of citizens to have answers about this are a little different from the time of investigation, investigation and judgment. We will have to wait for the end of the Federal Police investigations, the inquiry, and eventually the translation of this into a judicial procedure to be sure. I won’t get ahead of myself. The Federal Police has insisted, and the investigation, in fact, found that there were irregular uses, but we don’t know the extent. Individual conduct is being investigated. There are signs, and to know whether these signs will be proven or not, we will have to wait for the results of the investigative work, both from the Internal Affairs Office in administrative headquarters, as well as from the Courts, the police investigation, and then the eventual court process”, he said.
A subject that Cepik avoided is also the alleged participation of retired general Augusto Heleno, former chief minister of the Institutional Security Cabinet (GSI), a body to which Abin was linked at the time of the Bolsonaro government, and which was summoned to testify at the Federal Police next week.
“I cannot comment on the day-to-day administrative behavior of General Heleno, who was the chief minister of the Institutional Security Office (GSI). The fact is that Abin was, at that time, subordinated to the GSI structure and, therefore, there was a relationship of authority between the minister and the director of Abin, Ramagem. He [Heleno] He can say he wasn’t involved with FirstMile, or with the decision of this or that, but he was the chief minister and these doubts in society must be clarified. What was his role? This, as with any public agent, must be clarified. By omission or commission of the act, what was your involvement in the acts being investigated?”, he explained, although without explaining much.
Regarding military personnel from the Armed Forces in the process of destabilizing Brazilian democracy, the deputy director was a little more direct.
“At the CPMI on January 8, a series of pro-intervention demonstrations were identified that also involved elements of the Armed Forces. The extent to which this was tolerated, institutionalized or known to the commands is something that must be investigated. In relation to Abin, CPMI demonstrated that Abin fulfilled its legal and constitutional function of alerting the risks, monitoring and drawing attention to the possibility of those acts being consummated. That’s what I can talk about. I cannot comment on the Federal Police, the Army, or other bodies mentioned in the CPMI report”, said Cepik.
For the new number 2 of the Brazilian Intelligence Agency, what the body needs is to return to its essence and position itself as what it really is, a civil apparatus that is at the service of the Brazilian State, not private or political interests.
“Abin is a civil agency, most of its employees entered the last public competitions. What you had was subordination for a few years to the GSI, which was quite militarized, and, thus, the direct advisory link to the president was mediated by this structure. The transfer of Abin to the Civil House was a necessity. Abin employees are civilian, technical, civil servants, and now have the responsibility for improving processes for presidential advice. There is no need to talk about the demilitarization of Abin. The new directors are people who created the new priorities and the restructuring of internal processes at the agency. Most of the positions were assumed by civil servants, with a commitment to public service. It is the resumption of a process of professionalization at Abin, ongoing since the 1999 legislation, which suffered a blow under the last government. This is my personal opinion, and I answer for it”, concluded Cepik.