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Brazilian Real Surges After Ex-President Lula Found Guilty Of Corruption, Faces 9 Years In Prison

Just hours after current President Temer garnered enough votes necessary to block congressional motion that would put him on trial over corruption charges, Reuters reports that former President Lula has been found guilty of on corruption charges and faces 9 years in prison.

Earlier today, Bloomberg reported that Brazil President Michel Temer has more than the 172 votes necessary to block congressional motion that would put him on trial over corruption charges, according to Bloomberg tally of voter intentions. Tally based on interviews with party leaders, legislators and presidential aides is larger if divided allied parties such as DEM and PSDB are included. The motion expected to be voted in lower house committee, floor this week. Govt sees 39-41 of committee’s 66 members against trial.

Which is no all the more fascinating as Brazil’s former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was just sentenced to over 9 years in prison on corruption charges, according to Estado de S. Paulo newspaper. Lula was found guilty by Judge Sergio Moro on charges of money laundering, and bribe taking, Estado reports.

And the Real is jubilant...

As Bloomberg details,  Brazil’s former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has been convicted of bribe-taking and money-laundering in the most dramatic development to date of a sweeping corruption scandal that has shaken the country’s political establishment to its core.

Sergio Moro, the lead judge in the multi-billion dollar corruption probe known as Carwash, sentenced Lula to nine and a half years, according to a statement from the federal court in Parana.

The guilty verdict on Lula, one of the most popular presidents in Brazilian history, weakens his chances of leading the Workers’ Party back into power in the 2018 elections. Over the past few months he has consolidated his position in opinion polls as the front-runner for the presidential race, but he will become ineligible if his sentence is upheld on appeal. The conviction of the left-wing leader also ratchets up yet further the political tension in Brasilia, coming as President Michel Temer faces corruption charges of his own.

A political firestorm broke last year when police raided his home and briefly detained him for questioning, prompting scuffles in the street between supporters and critics. He was later charged with corruption and money laundering. In May a face-to-face encounter with Moro at his courtroom in Curitiba drew tens of thousands of the former-president’s followers to the southern city.

After two terms in office Lula left the presidency in January 2011 with a record-high approval rating after tapping into a commodity boom to pull millions of Brazilians out of poverty.