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Brazilian police will use Bolsonaro’s recent rally speech in coup investigation

São Paulo, Feb 26 (EFE).- Brazil’s Federal Police will use statements made by former President Jair Bolsonaro (2019-2022) during a massive rally on Sunday within the probe into his role in an alleged plot to stage a coup, official sources reported on Monday.

Federal Police sources told the official news agency Agencia Brasil that they will use the far-right leader’s speech in the investigation.

On Sunday, Bolsonaro gathered tens of thousands of supporters in São Paulo to speak out against the investigation, which he called a “persecution” against him.

Bolsonaro flatly denied plotting a coup against President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who narrowly defeated him in the 2022 election.

But in his speech to supporters, the far-right leader referred to a piece of evidence included in the police investigation into the alleged coup plot: a draft decree to declare a martial law.

Referring to this undated and unsigned document, Bolsonaro reiterated that it was “a mechanism protected by the Constitution” and stressed that “in the end, it was not activated” by his government.

The Minister of the Presidency, Rui Costa, said on Monday in a personal statement that Bolsonaro had “confessed his crime in front of a crowd.”

In his speech, Bolsonaro also asked the Parliament to approve an amnesty law in favor of the 1,413 people prosecuted for the acts of vandalism committed against the headquarters of the three branches of government on Jan. 8, 2023, a week after Lula’s inauguration.

For these acts, 59 people have already been sentenced to between 3 and 17 years in prison for crimes such as coup d’état, abolition of the democratic rule of law and damage to public property.

Sunday’s demonstration was called by the far-right leader in response to the Feb. 8 police operation, authorized by the Supreme Court, which confiscated his passport and banned him from leaving the country, although he has not yet been charged with any crime.

On Thursday, the former head of state was summoned to the police station to testify along with a number of former collaborators, but he invoked his right to remain silent. 

Source: La Prensa