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  • Former Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva arrives at voting station in Sao Bernardo do Campo, in the state of Sao Paulo, Nov. 15, 2020.

    Former Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva arrives at voting station in Sao Bernardo do Campo, in the state of Sao Paulo, Nov. 15, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 18 November 2020
Opinion

Lula's defense team called for a change in the initial penalty regime and a reduction in the indemnity, alleging incompetence of the original judge in the case.

Brazil's Superior Justice Court (STJ) Tuesday rejected unanimously former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's (2003-2011) motion regarding the sentence on the Guaruja Triplex case which led to his arrest between April 2018 and November 2019.

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The decisions was voted down by ministers Felix Fischer, Joao Otavio de Noronha, Reynaldo Soares da Fonseca, and Ribeiro Dantas. 

Lula's defense team called for a change in the initial penalty regime and a reduction in the indemnity, alleging incompetence of the original judge in the case, suspicions over former judge Sergio Moro, curtailment of defense, and use of legal means against the defendant for political ends, known as lawfare.

According to a complaint by the Lava Jato task force at the Federal Public Prosecutor's Office, Lula was accused of the possession of a triplex apartment in the coastal area of Guaruja, in the state of Sao Paulo.

Tje apartment was supposedly received in exchange for benefiting the Brazilian company OAS in contracts with state oil company Petrobras.

"Lula votes in São Bernardo. Voting is an achievement, so vote to transform our country"

Lula was first sentenced by the then federal judge of Curitiba's 13th Circuit Court, Sergio Moro, to nine and a half years in prison in July 2017. 

In January 2018, the 8th Panel of the Federal Regional Court for the 4th Region (TRF-4) unanimously confirmed the conviction and increased the total sentence to 12 years and one month in prison, thus preventing Lula from being a candidate in Brazil's 2018 elections.

In April 2019, the STJ reduced Lula's sentence to 8 years, 10 months, and 20 days. The former president was imprisoned for one year and seven months until his release in November 2019, after the Federal Supreme Court (STF) declared the prison in a second instance unconstitutional.

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