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Supporters of Brazil’s Imprisoned Former President Vow to Protest ‘In Perpetuity’

ISSN:1060-4189
LADB Article ID: 80573
Category/Department: Brazil
Date: 2018-04-20
By: Gregory Scruggs

Brazil’s former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (2003-2011), once called the most popular politician on Earth, has begun serving a prison sentence for a bribery conviction. While the federal judicial system argues that justice was served, da Silva’s defenders accuse the government of detaining a political prisoner and weakening Brazilian democracy. Crusading federal judge Sergio Moro ordered da Silva, popularly known as Lula, to turn himself in to the federal police on April 6, capping the highest-profile conviction to date in the wide-ranging Operation Car Wash corruption investigation.Judges convicted da Silva in July 2017, but he was free on an appeal, which he lost in January. Da Silva’s supporters continue to run a protest encampment in the vicinity of the Curitiba prison and vow to remain in perpetuity.“Our vigil will not end. While Lula is in jail, we’ll stay here,” said PT head Gleisi Hoffmann. She and 60 other PT members legally changed their middle names to “Lula” this week in solidarity with the former president.

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