Brazil Supreme Court ruling could free corruption convicts, including Lula

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Brazil Supreme Court ruling could free corruption convicts, including LulaBrazil’s Supreme Court began debating on Thursday whether to overturn a three-year-old rule that convicted criminals must go to prison right after losing their first appeal and not wait until they have exhausted their appeal options. The rule contributed to the success of Brazil’s biggest corruption investigation, the so-called Car Wash operation that put dozens of company executives and politicians in jail for bribes and kickbacks, including former leftist President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. The prospect of serving immediate prison time after losing a first appeal encouraged suspects to negotiate plea deals with prosecutors, providing them with information that helped unravel the biggest graft scheme in Brazil’s history.