Judge Ivan Athie from the Federal Court of the Second Region in Rio de Janeiro issued the release order after accepting the defendant’s request for a habeas corpus to counteract the preventive prison decree of Judge Marcelo Bretas.
Federal prosecutors accused Temer (2016 - 2018) of leading a “criminal organization” that had received or arranged for up to 1.8 billion reais ($472 million) in bribes through various kickback schemes, linked in the Lava Jato or "Car Wash" anti-corruption probe, which is the largest operation to combat corruption in Brazil's history and has uncovered a gigantic deviation scandal of the state oil company Petrobras.
This lead to Temer's arrest, as well as former Minister of Energy and Mining Moreira Franco and other six implicated in the same case.
However, and after only four days in jail, the appeals court judge ruled that the evidence provided by investigators did not justify the “preventive” jailing the defendants, adding that prosecutors presented “old facts, involving possibly illegal acts, but no evidence of repeated criminality after 2016 or any other factor that justifies preventive imprisonment.”
As a response, the federal prosecutor’s office said in a statement it would appeal the judge’s decision, and hoped its request would be heard by the full bench of the appeals court on Wednesday.