Retired UFC featherweight legend Jose Aldo may have some questions to answer regarding the origin of some money he and his wife, Viviane Pereira Oliveira, have allegedly received from the government.
Per Brazilian news outlet Extra, Oliveira’s name was found on Portal da Transparencia, Brazil’s public finance tracking website. It shows her allegedly receiving emergency payouts from a fund designated for some of the country’s poorest families during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the records, Pereira received monthly deposits of 600 reais (approximately $120) between May and October of 2020, with three more 300-real deposits made in November and December of the same year, for a total of 4,500 reais (approximately $860).
Upon further investigating, Extra discovered that Pereira was not registered under Cadunico, Brazil’s platform for social programs, making Viviane ineligible to receive the emergency money.
Most recently, Aldo and Oliveira’s names were in the news for hosting former far-right Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, who fled to the United States on December 30 and is currently staying at a mansion in Orlando, Florida. The estate is the property of Famous Family, a company owned by Aldo and Oliveira.
According to Forum magazine, the mansion was bought for $745,000, with the transaction taking place during the months when Viviane was listed to have been receiving the emergency deposits.
Upon learning the news and being approached by the press, Pereira took to her personal Instagram page, where she sent a message to all her followers about the scandal. The short paragraph was posted on the stories section of the platform, where Viviane denied all the claims.
“Just because we put Bolsonaro in our house, the leftists are now snooping on our life. I have never received or registered for emergency help,” she posted.
Aldo has yet to address the situation.
The reports of Oliveira’s alleged illegal deposits are the same as the ones involving several members of the legendary Gracie family, which was brought to light in March of 2022.
Aldo—an loyal Bolsonaro supporter dating back to the 2018 elections—saw his name involved in another scandal recently. According to Forum’s report, the former fighter was allegedly set to receive the amount of 200 thousand reais (approximately $40,000) on October 5 of 2022, which took place between the first and second round of the Brazilian presidential elections.
The money was to be awarded by Brazil’s Ministry of Citizenship and destined to the JAJ Institute, which is chaired by Aldo. Officially, the amount should be destined to organizing a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tournament, which so far has not been announced or taken place.
Due to some bank technicalities, the transaction has not yet been completed. However, the amount has already been reserved for the JAJ Institute and cannot be invested in other causes until its deadline on October 2023.
Aldo (31-8) retired from mixed martial arts following a unanimous decision loss to Merab Dvalishvili, in August 2022. During his 18-year-career, the Brazilian defeated some of most notable names in the sport, such as Frankie Edgar, Urijah Faber, Chan Sung Jung and Chad Mendes.
The 36-year-old successfully defended his WEC featherweight title twice, before it was converted to the UFC featherweight belt that he went on to defend seven more times. He is considered by many to be the greatest athlete in the history of the featherweight division.
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