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News > Latin America

Brazil: Supreme Court Denies Suspension of Lula's Imprisonment

  • Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

    Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. | Photo: Reuters

Published 13 June 2018

Lula's defense team argued that his political rights would be constrained due to the proximity of October's presidential election.

Felix Fischer, a judge in Brazil's Supreme Court of Justice (STJ), ruled against former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and his defense team's request to suspend his imprisonment and allow him to remain free until the final judgment of his corruption case.

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On Tuesday, Fischer noted that his decision was made based on the fact that the appeal presented before the Federal Regional Court of the 4th Region, or TRF-4, had not been delivered to the STJ and is awaiting a response from the Federal Public Prosecutor's Office.

Lula's defense team argued before the STJ that he is a 2018 presidential candidate; however, his political rights would be constrained due to the proximity of the October presidential election.

“We will register Lula (as a presidential candidate) on August 15,” said Rio de Janeiro Senator Lindbergh Farias. 

Referring to Brazil's judicial system and the corporate media, he said: “they've done all of this to slaughter the workers, and they know that Lula's politics are different. What they don't understand is that the people aren't accepting this and we're actually going to place Lula as a candidate.”

Lula has been detained at the federal police headquarters in Curitiba since April 7 on corruption and money laundering charges.

Despite his conviction and imprisonment, events that many legal experts and observers attribute to lawfare and to a salacious mainstream media campaign, Lula has topped every 2018 electoral poll conducted by Vox Populi, Ibope, Datafolha, Data Poder 360, Instituto Parana, the National Confederation of Transportation/MDA and Ipsos.

Lula's two terms in office were marked by a slew of social programs, lifting millions of Brazilians out of poverty and removing the country from the U.N. World Hunger Map. One of his most ambitious and successful plans is his Family Allowance (Bolsa Familia) plan. Launched in 2003, it provided stipends to families living below the poverty line. In return, those families must prove that their children are attending school and have been vaccinated.

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