Brazil: Judge Acquits Lula and Dilma of Illicit Financing

Woman holds a sign that reads 'Lula was not tried. He's the victim of political persecution' in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Nov. 27, 2019.

Woman holds sign that reads ‘Lula was not tried. He’s the victim of political persecution’ in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Nov. 27, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

A federal judge has acquitted former presidents Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff of the charge of association to commit crimes.

Brazil’s Federal Justice Wednesday acquitted former leftist presidents Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff of accusations of being part of a criminal organization whose purpose was to divert public funds to the Workers’ Party (PT).​​​​​

“Before an impartial judge, we have obtained Lula’s summary acquittal. The Brazilian magistrate highlighted an ‘attempt to criminalize political activity’ by the misplaced charge known as the ‘quadrillion,’ which is part of lawfare against Lula,” former president’s lawyer Cristiano Zanin tweeted.

The Federal court’s acquittal also benefits former PT’s treasurer Joao Vaccari and former Finance Ministers Antonio Palocci and Guido Mantega.

All of them were accused of having formed a criminal organization whose purpose was to extract money from the oil company Petrobras and other state-owned companies to finance the PT’s electoral campaigns.

This supposed diversion of money would have happened during the governments of Lula da Silva (2003-2010) and Rousseff (2011-2016) […]

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