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Brazil’s Supreme Court handed a 17-year prison sentence Thursday to a supporter of former President Jair Bolsonaro who stormed top government offices on Jan. 8 in an alleged bid to forcefully restore the right-wing leader to office.
Aécio Lúcio Costa Pereira, 51, is the first of several participants in the uprising to be prosecuted.
In January, cameras at the Senate filmed him wearing a shirt calling for a military coup and recording a video of himself praising others who had also broken into the building. Almost 1,500 people were detained on the day of the riots, though most have been released.
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Brazil’s Supreme Court has sentenced a rioter who stormed the capital on Jan. 8 to 17 years in prison. (Fox News)
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The majority of the 11 justices of the court ruled that Pereira committed five crimes: criminal association; staging a coup; violent attack on the rule of law; qualified damage; and destruction of public assets. They sentenced him to 17 years in prison.
Pereira denied any wrongdoing and claimed he took part in a peaceful demonstration of unarmed people.
Three other defendants also were standing trial Thursday as part of the same case, and a final decision for each defendant could drag into coming days.