The legal proceedings against Lula da Silva: a Lawfare case?
SOS Lula – Berlin
SOS Lula – Berlin is an initiative that started among citizens living in the Germany capital, that aims to inform and to develop further activities in order to denounce the judicial and policial persecution in Brazil (Lawfare) against the ex-President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and members of his family, through Operação Lava Jato (Car Wash Operation) and other similar procedures. In the following text we explain the motives and the context behind our initiative. We strongly suggest that other people and organizations develop similar initiatives.
Relying on investigations proceeding since 2008, in 2014 the Brazilian Federal Police started the so called “Operação Lava Jato” (Car Wash Operation) in order to trace corruption involving public officers, politicians and private CEOs. These investigations focused mainly on the huge Brazilian Petrobras company and other private corporations linked to it. “Operação Lava Jato”’s headquarters are located in the city of Curitiba and its Federal Court, as part of the 4th Federal Court Region of Brazil.Besides Federal Police Agents, it is promoted by Public Prosecutors of that Court, and the findings of the investigations are sent, first, to Judge Sergio Moro, whose Court is also seated in Curitiba, the capital of the state of Paraná, in Southern Brazil. “Lava Jato” started a series of similar investigations conducted by the Federal Prosecutor (Procurador Geral da República) and other Federal Agents, Prosecutors and Judges from other regions.
By and by, during the investigation process it became visible that “Lava Jato” and the investigations linked to it started to develop some unfair bias. The charges against members of the Partido dos Trabalhadores (Worker’s Party, of ex-president Lula) and their allies, as well as their judgment, were swiftly executed. Those against members of other political parties had a much lower timing; some of them have even not yet found their way into Courts, and may as well lapse, becoming void. It also became clear that there was an earnest striving in the investigations to find charges against the ex-President Lula, members of his family (the wife, recently deceased, and some of his sons) and friends. The main charges against him may be summed up in the following items:
Renovation and delivering of an apartment in the city of Guarujá, state of São Paulo, by OAS Corporation in exchange of support and official benefits.
Renovation of a small ranch in the city of Atibaia, near the city os São Paulo, to be used by the ex-President and his family, also by Odebrecht and also in exchange of benefits.
Other benefits granted to him in exchange of help to obtain contracts abroad.
Private financing to guarantee the storage, after the end of his term as President, of gifts received by him during his term.
The ownership by the Lula Institute of a ground adjacent to it.
In order to find charges against the ex-President that would allow his trial, condemnation and imprisonment, Lava-Jato and linked operations committed a series of illegal acts. Here some of them are described:
Illegal taping of private talks of the ex-President and members of his family.
Illegal disclosure of such tapes (transcriptions and audios) to hostile press and media, which have publicized them with exaggeration.
Inducing of witnesses and defendants to make statements against the ex-President and members of his family.
An illegal raid in his home, searching it aggressively, needlessly and without a warrant.
The Federal Police detained him illegally for many hours, in order to force a statement, while they could have demanded it swiftly. The ex-President never refused to go willingly to the Police to make a statement.
With no evidence, Prosecutors have made spectacular statements through hostile media declaring him to be the “capo” of a criminal organization.
Illegal restriction of his lawyers activities, showing an aggressive atitude towards them.
There is no doubt that today the ex-President is the target of what in English is called “Lawfare” – the using of the legal system, with the help of a hostile media, against someone considered a political enemy. The aim of such Lawfare is to neutralize his political activity, convicting him, even without evidence, in order to make it impossible to him to be a part of the political life of Brazil in the years to come. But we must underline the fact that, after hearing dozens and dozens of accusers, informers and witnesses throughout months and months, not a single evidence against the ex-President, his family or his aids was brought up. Things went the other way around: all statements confirmed his innocence. In spite of these exculpatory results, the charges continue to be hold in Court and there is a general idea that he will be convicted, even without any evidence against him.
Facing such a Lawfare in Brazil, the ex-President Lula filed an appeal to the UN Human Rights High Commissioner, presented by Teixeira Martins, José Roberto Botochio and Geoffrey Robertson QC, pleading that it will be impossible to have a fair trial under Judge Moro.
Besides the illegal procedures made by “Lava Jato”’s Agents, Procurers and Judges, the ex-President lawyer underlined the fact that the Brazilian Court Procedures allow the same Judge to preside the investigation and the trial. This procedure predisposes the defendant as a convicted person even before the final legal trial actually starts. We must also consider that the 4th Federal Court, that is the Appeal Court of the Judge Moro’s decisions, has already ruled that “Lava Jato” must remain above common law, due to the exceptional character of its investigations. As the best Brazilian jurists have stated, this confirms that Brazil lives today under a “state of exception” (Ausnahmezustand, in German) that actually suspends the Constitutional rights of the defendants.
There are other strong charges against “Lava Jato” and its agents: they are accused of violation of national sovereignty and sabotage against Brazilian economy. These charges sustain that “Lava Jato” did not act only against corruption and corrupters. It damaged permanently many companies, above all in the naval sector, and led to an increasing unemployment throughout Brazil. Its agents have cooperated very tightly with foreign agents, assuming a role that should be under the authority of the responsible for the foreign relations policy of the Government. But here we want to maintain our focus on the violation of the Constitutional rights of a defendant who, as important he has been and is in the Brazilian political scenario, is the target of an evident process of political Lawfare. Every citizen is entitled to have a fair and unbiased trial, and this is being denied to ex-President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. May be he will become a new Nelson Mandela who, in spite of what he might have or not have done, was the victim of a biased and corrupt forensic system based on the South African Apartheid System that ruled his country.
These are the reasons why we organized this SOS Lula initiative. We ask everybody to help us to spread these informations and to support him and his lawyers in their fight for justice. Today the ex-President’s fight for a fair trial embodies the fight against a state of exception and for democracy in Brazil.
We strongly suggest that you take a look at this site:
You can subscribe this letter by sending an e-mail to email@example.com with your name or profession (and your workplace). In this way you are allowing us to include your name in the list below:
SOS Lula Berlin. We support a fair trial for Lula, democracy and the respect for Constitutional rights in Brazil.
Achim Wachendorfer, Berlim
Adonildo José de Lima Santos, designer gráfico
Adma Muhana, São Paulo
Adriana Maximino dos Santos, Frankfurt
Alexandre Penna, engenheiro eletricista
Anne-Elisabeth Klein, Vaison-la-Romaine, France
Antônio Carlos Bragiato – Maffei Bragiato medicina, São Sebastião do Paraiso, Brasil
António Rossini, arquiteto
Artur Antonio Pereira, Médico, São Paulo – SP
Carla Bessa; Berlim
Carlos Herbert, Ceará, Brasil
Claudio Roberto da Rosa Santos, Prof. Funcionário Público Federal, Cidade de Osório/RS, Brasil
Cleire Sambo, Munique
Constantino Luz de Medeiros – Professor de Teoria da Literatura e Literatura Comparada (UFMG)
Cynthia Soares Carneiro – Professora de direito internacional, USP Ribeirão Preto, Brasil
Corinta Maria Grisolla Geraldi
Denise Fonseca de Carvalho, estudante de mestrado, Brandenburgische Technische Universität
Didice Godinho Delgado, Berlim
Djé Macedo, Berlim
Dr. Paulo de Resende, Strasbourg, França
Elizabeth Carvalho – jornalista, Paris
Elizabete Mathieu, Sorbonne, Paris
Erica Caminha Hassmann, Rosenheim
Flavio Prada, arquiteto, vereador, Riva del Garda, Itália
Flavio Wolf de Aguiar, Jornalista, Berlim
Fridel Teiche, jornalista, Berlin
Fritz Hofmann, Ludwigshafen, Deutschland.
Helga Dressel, Berlim
Jacqueline B. Carvalho, Brasil
Janaína Alves Sampaio Cruz, Psiquiatra-USP, São Paulo – Brasil
J. de Beer, Nederland
Jihad Abdallah, Espanha
João Adolfo Hansen- Professor aposentado- Universidade de São Paulo
João Wanderley Geraldi, Campinas
José Ângelo Ortelan, São Paulo
Jose Batista Neto – RG 7877491, Engenheiro, CESP – Companhia Energética de São Paulo, São Paulo – SP – Brasil
Leon Kossovitch, São Paulo
Lívia Suassuna, Profa. Associada – UFPE, Recife
Lígia Chiappini, Berlim
Luciana Vieira de Moraes, Cientista, Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Portugal
Luciano Andrey schadler, CPF 778.207.039-20
Luiz Costa Lima
Luiz Ernesto Bacellar Freudenthal, Berlim
Luis Felipe Lopes Trigo
Luiz Roncari, prof. Literatura Brasileira da FFLCH/USP
Margarida Maria Louro Felgueiras, Professora Associada da Faculdade de Psicologia e Ciências da Educação, Universidade do Porto, Portugal
Maria Áurea de Jesus Aleixo, Economiária aposentada
Marco Antônio de Magalhães Almeida, lawyer, Rio de janeiro – Brazil
Maria Clara de Beer, Holland
Maria Cristina F. Francisco, Coordination of the GDTB (Discussion Group on Brazilian Themes), University of Hamburg
Maria José Manoel, Assis, Brasil
Maristela Pimentel Alves, Arquiteta, Berlim, Alemanha
Martin Paul, Edenkoben, Germany
Martin Radke, Cientista, Berlim
Martim Assueros Gomes, Sociólogo – Brasil
Maurício Nascimento – Integration Specialist, Antwerp, Belgium
Miguel Marinho, rg. 5.099.500-5, professor universitário e escritor, São Paulo
Moacir Lopes de Camargo
Nely Maria da Silva Leandro/Gaviano, Contabilista, Kreis Germersheim, Bellheim, Alemanha.
Nilda Bezerra, Berlim
Nilton Freitas, Panamá City
Orivaldo Guimarães de Paula Filho, Consultor em RH, CPF. 034.437.908-60, São Paulo, Brasil
Oseias dos Santos Teixeira, Rio de Janeiro
Paula Ferreira Lima, Berlim
Paulo Roberto Machado Vitalli, Ibiza, Espanha
Pedro Dolabella Portella, Berlim
Peter Steiniger, Jornalista, Berlim
Renata Gouveia Delduque, socióloga, São Paulo/Brasil
Raquel de Vasconcellos Cantarelli, doutoranda UESP-Araraquara
RODRIGO DINIZ, AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND
Rosa Soares Nunes
Rudo Andre Van Leuven, Middelkerke, Belgium
Solange Lopes, Londres, Inglaterra
Viviane Santana, escritora, Berlim
Yesko Quiroga, Berlim
Zinka Ziebell, Berlim
Valdir Filgueiras Pessoa – Professor aposentado – Universidade de Brasília
Valdir José Freire – Aposentado – S.Paulo, Brasil
Valter Sanchez, Genebra
Victor Bezerra, Berlim
Vilma Govedice, Interior Designer – London
Wagner Costa Ribeiro, Professor Titular,Departamento de Geografia – USP, São Paulo
Vania Karsch, professora, Hamburgo