Supreme Court Minister Barroso pardons José Dirceu in Mensalão scandal

Brazilian Supreme Court Minister Luís Roberto Barroso pardoned the conviction of former Chief of Staff José Dirceu in the Mensalão scandal on 17 October 2016 (Valor, Globo G1). Many consider Dirceu, as a federal deputy during the early years of Lula’s presidency, to have been the mastermind of the scandal, in which many deputies were paid monthly for their support of the government. The pardon came after the request of Dirceu’s attorneys in February 2016 on the heels of former President Dilma Rousseff’s pardon of those convicted that met to certain conditions. Dirceu has served this sentence since 15 November 2013, when a court sentenced him to seven years and eleven months in prison. However, he will remain in prison to serve a twenty-year sentence for his conviction in the Petrobras corruption scandal.