Time.news – In Brazil, a Supreme Court judge, Edson Fachin, invalidated all of former President Lula da Silva’s criminal convictions, restoring his political rights and making him again eligible to ‘run’ against Jair Bolsonaro in 2022. Lula was leading the way the polls when he was convicted in 2018, by the federal justice of Parana for the Lava Jato operation.
Fachin ruled that the justice of Paraná he did not have the legal competence required to analyze criminal actions. The judge also ruled that the respective cases be forwarded to federal district justice. Fachin’s ruling refers to three processes in which Lula was tried by a court of first instance in Curitiba, appointed by the then judge Sergio Moro, who at the time felt that he did not have “legal competence” to analyze those cases, as explained by the supreme judge himself, whose plenary will have to confirm that decision.
According to the decision of Fachin, who is responsible for theanti-corruption operation Lava Jato, for which the former president was indicted, these three cases must now go to the federal courts of Brasilia, which will decide on the course of each of the cases. The decision concerns cases involving an apartment in the seaside resort of Guarujá, on the coast of the state of São Paulo; a country house in San Paolo di Atibaia; and an investigation into the Lula Institute, founded by the former president.
For the first case, Lula was sentenced to 12 years in prison, for the country house to 17 years, while the foundation case has not yet reached a final verdict. For these sentences, Lula spent 580 days in prison and was released when the supreme court he changed his jurisprudence and decided that a person can only be jailed when there are no more appeals available, and this was not the case with the former president. Fachin justified the decision with the fact that these cases, in which Lula was accused of having received bribes in cash and property from some of the construction companies involved in the Lava Jato scandal, but the cases were not related to the embezzlement of money in the state Petrobras, which were what justified the trials.
According to the magistrate, the judiciary of Curitiba it has no jurisdiction over the Petrobras scandals, which should be tried in other courts. Fachin’s decision will have to be examined by the full 11 members of the Supreme Court, which has not yet been called. If the whole court will support Fachin’s ruling, which is based on what he calls a “procedural error” for “lack of jurisdiction”, Lula will regain her political rights and he could even be a presidential candidate again in 2022.
Second electoral laws, Lula lost these rights in 2018, when one of the convictions that were overturned today by Judge Fachin was upheld in the second instance.