Brazil’s top court to decide whether Lula can avoid prison

February 9, 2018

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazil’s top court will decide whether former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will go to prison before all of his appeals have been heard.

Justice Luiz Edson Fachin ruled Friday that a request from da Silva to avoid immediate prison time should be analyzed by the full 11 member Supreme Federal Tribunal.

Last month, a lower federal court upheld the former president’s corruption conviction and sentenced him to 12 years and one month in prison. The popular leader universally known as Lula can still appeal to higher courts.

Da Silva, who governed Brazil from 2003 to 2010, says judges have been biased against him and denies any wrongdoing.

He is the front runner for October’s presidential election, but the conviction might bar him from the race.

Update hourly