Top Brazil court ends early prison rule, decision could free Lula


FILE PHOTO: Brazil’s former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, leaves for the cemetery to attend the funeral of his 7-year-old grandson, in Sao Bernardo do Campo, Brazil March 2, 2019. Ricardo Stuckert Filho/ Lula Institute/Handout via REUTERS

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil’s Supreme Court decided on Thursday to end mandatory imprisonment of convicted criminals after they lose their first appeal, restoring the previous rule that they should be allowed to exhaust all their appeal options before being locked up.

The politically charged re-interpretation of Brazil’s penal code could lead to the release of dozens of high-profile convicts, including former leftist president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, jailed last year for taking bribes.

Reporting by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Sandra Maler



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