Brazil court dismisses former president Lula's latest appeal

Brazil court dismisses former president Lula's latest appeal

The Secretariat of Public Security of Parana said in a statement that it was investigating the incident and that Lula was not on the bus at the time of the attack.

A Brazilian federal court on Monday rejected an appeal made by former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's lawyers, upholding his conviction for corruption and money laundering.

The Workers' Party said two buses were hit in the southern state of Paraná where Mr. da Silva has been rallying support for his presidential campaign.

Bolsonaro, who has repeatedly praised Brazil's two-decade-long military dictatorship, taunted Lula, calling him a "bandit", and challenging him in Curitiba to see "who can get the most people out on to the streets without paying them".

Lula was convicted of corruption in an investigation that has been called Car Wash.

Another right-wing group, the Movement for a Free Brazil, was planning its own anti-Lula rally in the city, just a short distance from where Lula and his Workers' Party faithful were due to gather.

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When Lula left office at the start of 2011, he was Brazil's most popular president on record, having presided over a commodities-fueled economic boom and won plaudits for his social policies.

In January, Brazilian courts extended Lula's conviction from nine and a half years to 12 years and a month.

Hoffman explained that the threats and physical violence are simply part of the right-wing's newest tactics to overthrow Lula's political influence and stifle contact with his supporters. The presidential election will be held in Brazil in October, and Lula da Silva declared that he is ready to become a presidential candidate despite the court's decision.

The former president also faces six other corruption cases. The more extreme Bolsonaro gets, the more it seems he thrills his supporters.

Analysts say Brazil should brace for the worst tempered, most unpredictable election since the end of the dictatorship in 1985. But he has also courted protests in many areas, including Sunday in the neighboring state of Santa Catarina where his campaign bus was hit by eggs and stones.

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