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Tuesday 20th March 2018

Portuguese Environmental Official Resigns over Corruption Charges


7Dnews London

Thu, 19 Sep 2019 07:26 GMT

Portugal's Secretary of State for Environmental Protection José Artur Neves resigned on Wednesday September 18th over allegations of fraud and corruption, AFP reported.

According to a statement released by the Ministry of Internal Affairs, "Following the request for the dismissal, for personal reasons, of the secretary of state for environmental protection, the minister of internal affairs accepted the request and transmitted this decision to the Prime Minister," local media reported.

The case with which Neves was charged implicated him on the acquisition of fire risk prevention equipment.

According to police reports, he was found placing an order with a company close to his party, with higher prices allegedly bought for residents who are at risk from imminent wildfires in Portugal.

The case came to public attention when a further investigation revealed how they were not as fire-resistant as claimed. Portugal was ravaged by forest fires over the summer, claiming over dozens of lives while stowing fear and chaos.

This is the second time Portugal's secretary of state for the environment has resigned. Last May witnessed the resignation of Carlos Martins over accusations of nepotism, according to The Portugal News.

According to Prime Minister Antonio Costa, whose party is most likely to win in next October general elections, "Justice is functioning, the government is calm".