Judge denies request to freeze $4.7bn from Vale’s accounts

(Image of the Brumadinho disaster by Guilherme Venaglia | Wikimedia Commons)

The judge Elton Pupo Nogueira, of the 2nd Public Finance Court of Belo Horizonte, Brazil, rejected the request to freeze R$ 26.7 billion ($4.7 billion) from Vale’s accounts, in a decision related to losses incurred after the Brumadinho tailings dam burst last year.

According to the company, the decision takes into consideration that Vale “has been actively cooperating with the development of the legal proceeding, as well as making efforts and expending financial resources to repair all the damages identified in the process”.

The disbursement of approximately R$ 7.8 billion ($1.4 billion) in remedial and compensatory measures and R$ 1.5 billion ($270 million) for fighting covid-19 was highlighted. The company also said that has injected approximately R$ 1 billion ($180 million) into the economy of the Brumadinho region.

The decision also mentions that approximately R$ 10 billion ($1.8 billion) in net guarantees, presented by Vale, are available in the proceeding, and that the company has defrayed all the research and technical investigations ordered by the court, without showing any resistance to the assessment of the damage. 

“The company reiterates its commitment to the reparation and the compensation of damages caused by the rupture of the dam, which started immediately after the event” said Vale in a press release.

Last month, federal prosecutors in Minas Gerais asked the court to cancel a R$250 million ($44 million) agreement between Vale and the Brazilian government over compensations for the disaster, saying that the public attorneys did not participate in the deal.

Vale reported on Thursday that 33 of its 104 dam structures in Brazil failed to receive positive stability assessments from the company’s dam monitoring system.

 

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