Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro threatened to punch a journalist on his face on Sunday after being asked about his wife's alleged involvement in a corruption scheme, international news organization Reuters reported. "I so want to pound your mouth with punches,", the president told O Globo's reporter, after an audio clip of the argument emerged. 

The reporter was part of a group that met Bolsonaro after his regular Sunday visit to the Metropolitan Cathedral in Brasilia. The president, however, left without making further comments and ignored the protests of the journalists after his remarks. Shortly after the president's comments, O Globo in its statement said that such intimidation "shows that Jair Bolsonaro does not acknowledge the duty of a public servant ... to be accountable to the public." 

The controversy erupted after the journalist had questioned Bolsonaro about a report in Crusoe magazine that linked Brazil's First Lady Michelle Bolsonaro to Fabricio Queiroz, a retired police officer and former adviser to her eldest son Flavio Bolsonaro.

Fabricio Queiroz and Senator Flavio Bolsonaro have been under investigation after allegations were raised against them for swindling money from government employees. According to Crusoe magazine, Queiroz had been depositing money in the bank accounts of Michelle Bolsonaro between 2011 and 2016, news agency AFP reported. It is to be noted that Flavio Bolsonaro was then serving as the Rio de Janeiro state legislator. No statement has been issued yet by the First Lady.

President Jair Bolsonaro has already come under sharp criticism over addressing the coronavirus pandemic crisis in Brazil as it has become the country with the second-highest number of cases and deaths in the world: 36,05,783 cases and 1,14,772 casualties, respectively to date.