Sócrates’ prison cell “invaded by fleas”

As news stories regurgitate more on the ins and outs of corruption investigation Operation Marquês, the principal suspect, former prime minister, José Sócrates is understood to have been further inconvenienced by flea bites.

According to a blog posted weekly by fellow inmate and former PJ inspector João Sousa, fleas invaded Sócrates’ cell recently, attacking one of his legs and leaving him “itching all over”. Sousa advised his new friend to “wash the cell”.

But the jokey tale hides a more serious consequence. According to Diário de Notícias, Sousa’s blog is now under investigation to determine whether the former public servant – currently accused of corruption and money-laundering – has violated Portugal’s strict laws surrounding “secrecy of Justice”.

Aside from alluding to Sócrates’ flea bites, Sousa’s blog “Dos dois lados das grades” (from both sides of the bars) is understood to have revealed private conversations with his former director of the PJ in Setúbal, Maria Alice Fernandes, in which reference was made to cases that have been archived “like Freeport and Meco”, as well as criticisms made of the PJ hierarchy.

“The disciplinary and inspection unit of the PJ is evaluating João de Sousa’s blog from a juridical perspective,” a spokesperson told DN. “It is trying to determine whether there was violation of duty as a public servant which would warrant accusing him of this crime.”

For the time being, “Dos dois lados das grades”, promising a new story every Saturday, can be read on: https://dosdoisladosdasgrades.wordpress.com/

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