Brazil’s STF sends 2014 case against Bolsonaro to lower court
Brazil’s Supreme Federal Court (STF) Justice Dias Toffoli Monday sent to the Federal District Court the second criminal action in which former President Jair Bolsonaro is a defendant, Agencia Brasil reported.
Bolsonaro has been charged with incitement to rape in a speech he made at the House of Representatives in December 2014, when he was a congressman. On that occasion, Bolsonaro said that he would not rape Congresswoman Maria Do Rosário (PT-RS) only because she did not deserve it. The next day, he repeated the statement in an interview with the Zero Hora newspaper.
After the statements, Bolsonaro was sued by the Federal Public Ministry (MPF) and by Do Rosário. Monday’s decision concerned the prosecution’s charges while last week the STF sent to the District Court the case filed by Do Rosário.
Bolsonaro -a former Army captain- had begun answering to the charges before the STF but the proceedings were halted after he became President in 2019. With the end of his term and the immunity it entailed, Toffoli determined that the case should go to a lower court.
After the incident, Bolsonaro’s defense claimed that their client did not incite rape, but only reacted to insults from Do Rosário against the Armed Forces during a human rights event. The lawyers also argue that the clash took place inside Congress and should be protected by the constitutional rule of parliamentary immunity, Agencia Brasil also explained.
Meanwhile, President Luiz Inácio Lula Da Silva said Monday about the Jan. 8 uprising in Brasilia that it has been proven that they wanted to carry out a coup d’état and that those responsible will be exemplarily punished. Lula insisted Bolsonaro coordinated the riots.
It has already been proven that [they] tried to stage a coup coordinated by the former president who now tries to deny it, but who, when he lost the elections, locked himself at home to prepare the coup, said Lula.
We are going to investigate and whoever is guilty will pay, … and will go to jail if he has committed a crime. But we will not accept that people try to stage a coup and destroy the democracy of our country, he exclaimed.
Now we have a citizen who does not converse with anyone and who does not want to converse. He only wants to transmit lies, false news, say nonsense, and attack others. And that has to stop, Lula added.