Brazilian judge issues arrest warrant against ex-president 'Lula'

ANI | Updated: Apr 06, 2018 09:37 IST

Brasília [Brazil], April 6 (ANI): A Brazilian judge has issued an arrest warrant for former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, whose bid to return to power was quashed when the country's Supreme Court ruled 12 years of imprisonment for 12 years for Lula.

The warrant came several hours after the country's top body, the Supreme Federal Tribunal, voted 6-5 to deny a request by da Silva to stay out of prison while he appealed a corruption conviction, reported the Washington Post.

Federal judge Sergio Moro allotted 24 hours to the former Brazilian President to turn himself in to police in the southern city of Curitiba, the report said.

He is facing 12 years in jail on charges of accepting a bribe but had asked to remain free during his appeal.

Maintaining his innocence, Lula has said that the charges are politically motivated to prevent him running for president again.

Silva's Workers' Party, in a statement posted on Twitter, wrote, " No matter how many roses the mighty kill, they will never manage to stop spring."

Da Silva, who is known commonly as Lula, was convicted of corruption and money laundering last July and was and sentenced to almost 10 years of imprisonment.

However, in January, an appeals court unanimously increased the sentence to 12 years, the report said.

Lula, who served as president from 2003 to 2011 and left office with approval ratings over 80 percent, has been labeled as "most popular politician on Earth" by former U.S. President Barack Obama.(ANI)