Instituto Lula

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Federal Prosecutors need to explain the contradictory and arbitrary nature of their actions against Lula

Jul 17, 2015 6:06 PM

The Lula Institute and former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva were surprised to learn that prosecutor Valtan Timbó Mendes Furtado, of the Federal Prosecutor's Office in Brasília, decided to open a new investigative process on an issue that was already being examined by Federal Prosecutor Mirella de Carvalho Aguiar.

It is an entirely irregular, untimely and unjustified procedure, which is why appropriate action should be taken to correct the arbitrary actions of the Federal Prosecutor’s office without prejudice to other legally appropriate actions.

Unlike the reports that were leaked anonymously to news organizations on Thursday afternoon (July 16), former President Lula has never been the subject of "informal investigation".Nor is he “suspected" of any criminal offense.The former president is actually the target of a serious breach of conduct by Federal Prosecutor Anselmo Lopes, who initiated this process and is therefore responding to charges at the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office

So that the truth can be revealed, without manipulation or distortion of the facts, the Lula Institute offers the following chronology of events:

April 12:The newspaper O Globo published a report of "secret flights" by former President Lula to the Dominican Republic in April 2013, where he gave a lecture sponsored and paid for by the Odebrecht company.Even after receiving all the information about the trip provided by the Institute, the newspaper made an ordinary event appear illegal: since 2011, after leaving the government, the former president has made 78 trips abroad to give lectures, to receive honors, to participate in debates and enhance Brazil's image and disseminate Brazil’s social programs to assist in the fight against hunger and poverty.On most of these trips he gave speeches sponsored by companies, private entities and government agencies in foreign countries – and all of these trips were widely publicized in the Brazilian press and on the Lula Institute website.

April 20: Based on the story in O Globo, other newspapers and the Internet, Anselmo Lopes, as attorney in the Prosecutor's Office in the Federal District (FIES) published a "Notice of Fact".In the text containing only 50 lines, and offering no proof or evidence, the prosecutor suggested that former president Lula "could," "in theory", "perhaps" be suspected of international influence trafficking if a "case were proved" that Odebrecht received special favors because the authorities in foreign countries had been influenced to contract work by the company.On the same day, the " Notice of Fact " was distributed randomly to attorney Mirella de Carvalho Aguiar, who was in charge of the decision to either archive the file, open an investigation, or ask for due diligence and more information to prepare her decision.

April 29:Without any of the parties involved having been notified and before the order became public knowledge, reporter Thiago Bronzatto, from Época obtained a copy of the “Notice of Fact” at the PRDF.Without making any reference to the process that he obtained, the reporter questioned the office of the Lula Institute about the former President's trips mentioned in the "Notice of Fact ".

April 30:In an outrageously manipulated news item, under the title "Lula, the operator", on the webpage of the Época magazine on the siteand in the printed edition of the magazine, took the unfounded conclusions of prosecutor Anselmo attorney as true. The magazine concealed the true nature of the process from its readers and treated a mere "Notice of Fact" as if it were part of the collective research being done by the Center for Combating Corruption of the PRDF.Deliberately omitting the title, the magazine doctored the official document, reproducing only the summary of prosecutor Anselmo’s conclusions.

May 1: The distortions in the Época magazine began to crumble when attorney Mirella Aguiar told reporters of the O Estado de São Paulo and O Globo that there was no investigation against Lula and the "Notice of Fact " was based on published information in the press. She said that they have no validity as evidence on their own.

May 4: The Lula Institute published a note titled "The seven lies in the Época Magazine " explaining the facts and exposing the editorial manipulation.The magazine, in addition to not publishing our response, never bothered to reply or acknowledge any mistake in the text.

May 6:The Attorney representing former President Lula and the President of the Lula Institute, Paul Okamotto asked for a meeting with Mirella Aguiar and spontaneously offered clarification of the activities of the former president with the Institute and as a lecturer represented by LILS Lectures and Events Ltda.

May 18: After the initial 30 day period to decide how the "Notice of Fact" should be dealt with, prosecutor Mirella Aguiar, issued a ruling that there was insufficient evidence to open an inquiry."The few elements contained in the file – reports and stories by the representative and the press are devoid of sufficient evidentiary support – they do not support the establishment of formal investigation against the defendant," the prosecutor wrote.In the same order it deferred the date for a decision for up to 90 days (in other words until August 17) and requested information from Lula Institute, Odebrecht, the Federal Police, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the BNDES, Líder Air Taxi company and others, to inform her decision.

June 8: TheLula Institute requests a 30-day extension of the deadline for providing information.

June 19: Prosecutor Mirella Aguiar, issues an order again extending the deadline for making representations and information until September 18.

July 8:Federal Prosecutor Valtan Timbó Mendes Furtado, in a decree, inexplicably decides to open a criminal investigation, presenting as justification: a) the content of the “Notice of Fact" and b) "the imminence of the expiration of the deadline",but also considering the insufficiency of evidence for a deliciti opinion.Note that the content of the " Notice of Fact " had already been disqualified by the attorney Mirella Aguiar – the reason for the request for new information.It should also be noted that on July 8, only 40 days remained in the terms established in the first deadline and 60 days remained in the terms established in the second deadline.

July 9: Under the deadline, and absent the knowledge that the process had been literally taken over by another prosecutor, the Lula Institute filed a document at the PRDF with the information requested by Attorney Mirella Aguiar.

July 16: Incomplete and distorted information anonymously leaked to Globo News, without hearing the Lula Institute, that disclosed the incorrect information that "prosecutors" had decided to open an investigation against former president Lula in the PRDF.

The Lula Institute and former president Lula are unaware of the reasons why prosecutor Valtan Timbó Mendes Furtado, interfered with the process that was being conducted by the Chief Prosecutor in an inappropriate and arbitrary manner.

It is clear, therefore, that former president Lula is the subject of manipulated information and arbitrary decisions for the evident purpose of embarrassing and staining, under false pretenses, the image of the most popular leader this country has ever had, both in Brazil and abroad.

In light of these facts, former President of the Republic Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and the Lula Institute, expect the prosecutor to explain to the country why such contradictory and egregious processes were used.

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