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Brazilian Prosecutors Charge 39 for Storming Government Buildings

Darren Maung
Darren is an aspiring writer who wishes to share or create stories to the world and bring humanity together as one. A massive Star Wars nerd and history buff, he finds enjoyable, heart-warming or interesting subjects in any written media.
Published: January 18, 2023
People work during the cleaning and renovation works of the Brazilian Supreme Court building after it was damaged by supporters of Brazilian former President Jair Bolsonaro in Brasilia, on Jan. 17, 2023. (Image: DOUGLAS MAGNO/AFP via Getty Images)

On Jan. 17, Brazil’s attorney general charged dozens suspected of storming government buildings during the riots that occurred earlier in the month.

Since the country’s elections in October 2022, Brazil has been rocked by civilian unrest following the election victory of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva — better known as Lula.

Action against the crowd

The fledgling members of the prosecutor-general have indicted 39 people for storming the Senate building during the riots — which coincidentally happened on the second anniversary of the Capitol riots in the U.S, the BBC reported.

The charges include “armed criminal association, violent attempt to subvert the democratic state of law, staging a coup and damage to public property,” the prosecutor-general’s office said in a statement.

The riots in Brazil were ignited following the defeat of former president Jair Bolsonaro, who lost to Lula during the elections last year. The latter was previously charged with corruption in 2017, having been imprisoned before the charges were cleared.

Following the storming of several government buildings in the capital of Brasilia, including the presidential palace, and Brazil’s Congress and Supreme Court, the government made more than a thousand arrests, with dozens of police officers reportedly wounded.

The attorney general also requested that the suspects’ assets, worth around 40 million reais (US$7.7 million), be frozen to compensate for the destruction caused. 


Despite the charges placed, authorities cannot prove that the suspects broke any anti-terror laws, for they would have to be indicted for “xenophobia and prejudice based on race, ethnicity or religion.”

During the turmoil, Bolsonaro traveled to the U.S., apparently not wanting to be present during Lula’s inauguration. In Florida, talking to a group of supporters, he called the recent chaos “unbelievable”, Reuters reported. He has continued to deny any involvement in the unrest in Brasilia.

“Unfortunately, people learned, understood what politics is, got to know the political powers, and started to value freedom,” Bolsonaro said.

The Supreme Court is investigating whether Bolsonaro had any part in inciting the violence, with other probes digging for comments he supposedly made during his time as president over “anti-democratic statements.”

The Senate’s president, Rodrigo Pacheco, released a list of those suspected of the attacks on Congress, with more charges ready to be laid on alleged rioters.

Lula has also dismissed 40 troops protecting the presidential residence, calling them “complicit” for not preventing the riots from damaging the government buildings, ABC News reported.

According to the BBC, he declared that he would “punish” Bolsonaro’s supporters for the chaos caused.

In other news, Brazilian police reported that they apprehended a second suspect believed to be part of a bomb plot against Lula. The first suspect, named George Washington de Oliveira Sousa, was arrested on Christmas Eve after a bomb was discovered near the airport in Brasilia — the location of the president’s inauguration. A third suspect is still on the run.