Brazil appeals court upholds da Silva corruption conviction

Brazil appeals court upholds da Silva corruption conviction

A Brazilian appeals court unanimously upheld the corruption conviction of former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Monday. The ruling brings da Silva one step closer to being barred from running for Presidency and serving his sentence in prison.

Da Silva was convicted [JURIST report] in July 2017 of corruption for making a deal [AP report] with a construction company in return for a beachfront apartment. In January, a group of federal magistrates upheld his conviction [JURIST report] and increased his sentence by two-and-a-half years. Under Brazilian law, the defendant must start serving his sentence once all motions related to the first appeal are exhausted. He is likely to appeal again as he still has one motion remaining under law.

Additionally, da Silva has filed a preemptive habeus corpus petition [DW report] and he cannot be jailed until the Supreme Federal Tribunal [official website] rules on April 4.

Many suspect that da Silva is attempting to start a prolonged legal battle that will allow him to campaign for the October election. Despite his conviction and six other corruption charges, da Silva is ahead in preliminary polls. The law states that he should be barred from running for office.