police arrest more pro-Bolsonaro radicals

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This Friday, the Federal Police carried out search and arrest warrants against suspects accused of participating in the January 8 riots, in which radical supporters of former President Jair Bolsonaro invaded and destroyed buildings of all branches of power in Brasília. 

There are a total of 32 arrest warrants, and another 46 search and seizure orders in ten Brazilian states.

Among the targets is a woman accused of vandalizing the statue of Justice in front of the Supreme Court. She spray-painted “you lost, sucker,” in reference to the comments made by Justice Luís Roberto Barroso’s comments to one Bolsonaro supporter who asked him about the results of the election, which the former president lost.

Another target is the man who, during the invasion, stole a ball autographed by football player Neymar. The ball had been on display in the House since 2012, and was returned a month later.

Retired Army captain Vilmar José Fortuna is another target. He had a job at the Defense Ministry and was fired after appearing in footage taken of the January 8 riots.

It is the eighth such action by the Federal Police against people identified as having participated in the anti-democratic acts. Mr. Bolsonaro’s nephew was among them.

Law enforcement was able to identify many of the rioters through self-published videos on social media, filmed while looting public property.

On Thursday, the Federal Supreme Court completed its analysis of the more than 1,400 arrests of suspects detained in the days following the attacks. Justice Alexandre de Moraes rejected the requests for the release of 86 women and 208 men whose accusations he considered more serious. They were remanded in custody.

Former President Jair Bolsonaro is the target of a separate investigation into the organization and financing of the riots. He is accused of inciting his supporters to violence.

The head of the Federal Police, Andrei Passos, said this week that the coup plotters arrested as a result of the January 8 acts were experiencing a “collective outburst” because they had been heavily influenced by radical social media content.

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