Brazil Brazilian police arrested 18 people accused of allowing illegal logging in the Amazon rain forest and were searching for 19 others, including environmental protection agents, the environment minister said.
Marina Silva told Agencia Brasil, the official government news agency, that Friday's operation by federal police and environmental officials was aimed at ending violations of government rules limiting deforestation of the vast rain forest in the eastern Amazon state of Para.
The suspects include loggers, members of the environmental protection agency, Ibama, and government workers of the Para state Finance Department and the Department of Science, Technology and the Environment, Agencia Brasil reported.
The accused will be charged with crimes including corruption, forging documents, money laundering and environmental destruction, Agencia Brasil said. The Ibama workers were suspended.