Former judge Sergio Moro, who jailed former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and later served as justice minister in Jair Bolsonaro’s government, won a seat in the Brazilian Senate in legislative elections this Sunday.
Moro, a former icon of the fight against corruption in Brazil, wanted to run for president, but his party, Union Brasil, eventually forced him to abstain; Today he won with 98.2% votes counted and 33.7% votes in Parana (South) state.
The former judge was ahead of Bolsonaro’s closest candidate, Paulo Martínez (29.1%); Alvaro Diaz (23.9%); and Rosen Ferreira (8.0%).
Moro held a controversial position in Paraná state, where he was the first to prosecute cases under Operation Lava Jato, which uncovered a corruption conspiracy at state-owned Petrobras in 2014 and jailed businessmen and politicians, including Lula. He was in jail for 580 days.
Another of his allies in Lava Jato, the then-coordinating lawyer of that action, Deltan Tallagnole, was elected federal vice-president, receiving more votes from Paraná than even PT’s leader, Gleicy Hoffmann, according to official results.
Moro’s wife Rosangela Moro is a federal deputy candidate for the state of São Paulo and is running in these legislative elections.
Operation Lava Jato has fallen into disrepute since the Supreme Court overturned many of these proceedings due to jurisdictional issues and declared Moro “impartial” in the cases against Lula. Before Bolsonaro.
Moro left the justice department in 2019 to become Bolsonaro’s justice minister, who won the previous year’s elections and wants to renew his mandate this year for another four years.
However, he resigned from the post in April 2020, clashing with the state president, who accused him of politically interfering with the central police to favor his own interests.
Subsequently, he launched himself into the presidential race, and although Union Brasil finally rejected his name, opinion polls placed him as the third favorite, behind Lula and Bolsonaro, with around 10% of the vote.
156 million Brazilians went to the polls today to elect a president, 27 governors, 513 federal representatives and a third of 81 senators in addition to regional legislative chambers.