Brazil’s Lula creates standoff with defiance of prison order

SAO BERNARDO DO CAMPO, Brazil — Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva’s defiance of a judge’s deadline to turn himself in and start serving a 12-year prison sentence for corruption has created a tense standoff with the ex-leader holed up with supporters in a union headquarters.

Da Silva, a towering figure in Brazilian politics who leads preference polls ahead of October’s presidential election, is expected to attend a Saturday morning Mass for his late wife to be held at the metallurgical union in the Sao Paulo suburb of Sao Bernardo do Campo.

Federal judge Sergio Moro had given the ex-president until Friday afternoon to present himself to police in Curitiba, about 260 miles (417 kilometers) southwest of Sao Bernardo do Campo.

But the deadline came and went with police reluctant to move into the union building given the thousands of da Silva’s supporters outside, making clashes a possibility. The metallurgical union is where the former president universally known as “Lula” got his start as a union organizer long ago.

“The intention is not to force compliance at any cost, but rather follow the order the best way possible, with tranquility and without a media show,” president of federal police Luis Antonio Boudens said in a statement.

Two sources close to da Silva told The Associated Press the former leader would not

Article source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/brazils-ex-president-lula-defies-court-hunkers-down/2018/04/06/39ac915e-3a01-11e8-af3c-2123715f78df_story.html

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