Mayor Valdemar Alves’ name has become synonymous with the deadly fires that killed 66 people in the borough of Pedrógão Grande in 2017. This week he went before magistrates in a case brought by public prosecutors investigating the fires and “refused to give testimony”, on the basis that there is no accusation formulated against him, and no legitimacy in his having been made an ‘arguido’ (suspect).
The hearing was adjourned until March 26.
In the meantime Alves’ lawyer has lodged an appeal for the removal of his client’s arguido status.
Alves has been in and out of the news since the fires, with the most recent ‘scandal’ centring on the alleged misuse of donations to victims.
An inquiry opened into the allegations has since been archived.
An earlier ‘scandal’ centred on complaints that Alves’ council had approved rebuilding funds for a number of properties that eligible for them (click here).