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Brazil police conduct new raids as part of probe into Brasilia riots


Supporters of Brazil’s former President Jair Bolsonaro demonstrate against President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva outside Brazil’s National Congress in Brasilia, Brazil, January 8, 2023. REUTERS/Adriano Machado/File Photo

Brazil’s federal police on Tuesday carried out fresh raids as part of an investigation into the Jan. 8 insurrection, when supporters of former far-right President Jair Bolsonaro stormed government buildings in Brasilia.

Police said in a statement they were serving three temporary detention warrants, one preventive arrest warrant and six search and seizure warrants in the federal district, where Brasilia is located, under Supreme Court orders.

The new raids represent the fifth phase of an operation launched last month aimed at identifying people who participated in, funded or fostered the riots, in which a mob invaded and ransacked the Congress, presidential palace and Supreme Court.

They were protesting against Bolsonaro’s defeat by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in an October election and calling for a military coup to oust Lula and restore the far-right leader.

Police did not disclose the names of those targeted in the raids but said they were being investigated for the crimes of “violent abolition of the rule of law, coup d’état, qualified damage, criminal association, incitement, destruction and deterioration of specially protected property”.