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Former Brazilian club employee plans to sue US embassy

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A former Brazilian club employee plans to file a lawsuit against the US embassy in Brasilia and five of its personnel for injuries she sustained from the US authorities late last year.

Romilda Aparecida Ferreira says she was run over on December 29, 2011 by an American embassy driver, who was dispatched to the club to pick up three US marines and one civilian staffer.

Little was noticed about the incident at the time it took place in Brazil’s capital, but the incident came to light after US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta was questioned about it by a Brazilian reporter during a press conference.

Panetta claimed that Washington had investigated the case, “and severely punished” the marines, and recalled them from Brazil.

Brazilian prosecutors have already said they are considering criminal charges, including assault and failure to provide assistance to an injured person.

Ferreira’s lawyers said they are monitoring prosecutors’ progress with potential criminal charges before proceeding with the lawsuit.

The lawyers also say they plan to file the suit for injuries, medical expenses, lost income and psychological trauma after the hit-and-run incident, leaving her stranded in the club parking lot with a broken collarbone, punctured lung and other injuries.

Damages, they say, would help compensate for Ferreira’s injuries, mental suffering and costs she incurred in her recovery.

The former Brazilian club employee is still recovering from surgery and treatment over the incident and reportedly plans to begin a new career as a shop owner.

A US embassy spokesman confirmed there was an inconclusive discussion about compensation, but was unaware of the exact details.

The revelation comes weeks after a sex scandal involving 12 US Secret Service agents and 11 members of the US armed forces in Colombia brought embarrassment to the administration of US President Barack Obama.


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