Portuguese prosecutors reportedly mistranscribed wiretaps that implicated PM in corruption scandal

Portugal's Public Prosecutor's Office reportedly confused the name of Prime Minister António Costa with that of Economy Minister António Costa Silva in the transcript of the 'Operation Influencer' wiretaps that led to the fall of the Portuguese government earlier this week.

That's according to the lawyer for one of the defendants in the case, who revealed that the error was detected during questioning and said that prosecutors have recognised their mistake.

There's been no public comment yet from the Attorney General's Office or the Supreme Court of Justice.

Costa, a Socialist, has led Portugal since 2015 and won a landslide election just last year. But he stepped down immediately after his government was rocked by a major police raid on Tuesday as part of a corruption investigation that included the arrest of his chief of staff along with four other people and one of his ministers being named as a suspect.

Costa took only a few hours to address the nation and say that, while asserting his innocence, he was unable to stay in his post. He's due to remain as a caretaker prime minister until new elections in March.

The investigative judge who ordered the raids and arrests alleged malfeasance, corruption of elected officials and influence peddling related to lithium mine concessions near Portugal’s northern border with Spain and plans for a green hydrogen plant and data centre in Sines on the south coast.