Brazil court hands down convictions in corruption case

Supreme Court finds 12 members of four political parties guilty

Juan Arias
Río de Janeiro - 04 Oct 2012 - 11:46
The courtroom during the so-called "mensalao" trial.
The courtroom during the so-called "mensalao" trial.REUTERS

Brazil's Supreme Court on Monday convicted 12 members of four political parties aligned with the government in a massive corruption case involving payoffs to lawmakers during former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva's first term.

Known as the mensalão case, the investigation has gripped the entire country for the past seven years since Lula da Silva went on national television to apologize for the actions of some in his Workers Party (PT), which is still in power under current President Dilma Rousseff.

The judges presiding the trial of 38 officials, which began in early August, have already handed down 22 convictions and acquitted four due to a lack of evidence.

The latest 12 officials convicted belong to the Party of the Republic (PR), the Brazilian Labor Party (PTB), the Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB) and the Progressive Party (PP) - all of which form an alliance with Rousseff's PT. The trial continues.

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