‘Carwash’ scandal airs Brazil’s dirty laundry

Hundreds of thousands took to the streets to protest government corruption at the highest levels, with both Brazil’s president and now the opposition in the firing line. Dilma Rousseff used to be a champion for Brazil’s poor; today the former Marxist guerrilla is a pariah figure, sucked into a corruption scandal

For the past year, protests have gripped Brazil, with people from all levels of society taking to the streets to voice their rising anger with a tainted political class, against a backdrop of economic stagnation. On April 17, Congress voted to impeach Rousseff, triggering an outpouring of emotion on the streets, and a legal process that could drag on for months.

Her supporters have branded the impeachment proceedings as a coup, but her presidency may now be permanently tainted. However, several prominent opposition figures were also implicated in the Lava Jato scandal, suggesting that the turbulence in Brazil’s politics is likely to continue.

Photography by Tommaso Protti