RIO – The new Federal Police superintendent in Rio, whose name was not on the list of nominees by President Jair Bolsonaro, is a well-known figure in Rio’s anti-corruption operations. Specialist in financial crimes, Tácio Muzzi has already led the Police Station to Suppress Corruption and Financial Crimes and came to assume the position of superintendent on an interim basis last year, amid another administrative turmoil caused by Bolsonaro in the PF arm in his political cradle.

Superintendent of the Federal Police in Rio, Tácio Muzzi

Photo: Tomaz Silva / Agência Brasil / Estadão

Today, as executive regional delegate, Muzzi coordinated, before taking up functions in the Ministry of Justice and Public Security during the Michel Temer administration, the working group of the Car wash in Rio. He played a leading role, for example, in the arrest of businessman Eike Batista, in January 2017, whose crimes he would have practiced dialogue with Muzzi’s specialty – both as a delegate and in his academic career.

Another central operation in Muzzi’s career was the Calicut, November 2016, which arrested former governor Sérgio Cabral, a key figure in all investigations by the Car wash fluminense. That moment, according to the delegate himself stated at the time, marked the beginning of cooperation between Rio and Curitiba, until then the epicenter of the operation.

Within the PF, he is seen as an expert on the structure of the organ, as well as open to dialogue. “As a representative entity of the category, we understand that Tácio is a sensible name, of extreme confidence within the category, precisely because he knows the PF of Rio de Janeiro internally”, says the president of the Union of Servants of the Federal Police Department in Rio, Gladiston Alves da Silva, for whom the soap opera about nominations is more damaging than the names themselves.

Soon after arresting Eike, still in January of that year, Muzzi packed up and left for Brasília, where he was deputy director of the Department for Asset Recovery and International Legal Cooperation of the Ministry of Justice and Public Security. His appointment was published by one of Bolsonaro’s current opponents, Minister of the Supreme Federal Court (STF) Alexandre de Moraes, who occupied the Justice portfolio. The appointment was made by the then general director of the PF, Leandro Daiello.

Afterwards, the new superintendent came to occupy another nationwide position before returning to Rio. Between 2018 and 2019, he was general director of the National Penitentiary Department.

Muzzi has been with the Federal Police since 2003. In parallel to this, he played an academic career at Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), for which he completed a doctorate in law in 2015, with the thesis ‘State pension funds (de) as capital market investors: duties, limits and responsibilities’.

So the right hand of the former superintendent of Rio Ricardo Saadi, Muzzi provisionally assumed the post last year when the friction between Bolsonaro and former minister Sérgio Moro started to appear. At the time, the president already showed interest in interfering in the command of the PF in his political cradle, a state in which his sons Carlos and Flávio are investigated by the State Prosecutor’s Office, with no direct relationship with the PF.

Muzzi left the interim function after five months, when they appointed Carlos Henrique de Oliveira, he, too, at the center of the new controversy involving the Federal Police and the President of the Republic. This week, shortly after Moro left the government, Oliveira was taken to Brasília by Bolsonaro and the new PF general director, Rolando Alexandre, who put him in the position of executive director of the agency, the second most important in the hierarchy.

It was within the scope of Oliveira’s new nomination that Bolsonaro again attacked the press, when asked about his alleged interference with the Federal Police. “Shut up,” shouted the president to reporters, when asked if he had interfered with the organ’s Rio de Janeiro arm.

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