Brazil's police carry out fresh raids as part of Jan. 8 riots probe

FILE PHOTO: Supporters of Brazil's former President Jair Bolsonaro demonstrate against President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva as security forces operate, outside Brazil’s National Congress in Brasilia, Brazil, January 8, 2023. REUTERS/Adriano Machado

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazil's federal police on Friday carried out fresh raids as part of a probe into the Jan. 8 insurrection, when supporters of former far-right President Jair Bolsonaro stormed government buildings in Brasilia.

Police said in a statement they were serving three preventive arrest warrants and 14 search and seizure warrants ordered by the Supreme Court in five states and the federal district, where Brasilia is located.

The new efforts represent the fourth phase of an operation launched last month aimed at identifying people who participated in, funded or fostered the riots, in which a mob invaded and ransacked the Congress, presidential palace and Supreme Court.

Police did not disclose the names of those targeted by the raids but highlighted they were being investigated for the crimes of "violent abolition of the rule of law, coup d'état, qualified damage, criminal association, incitement, destruction and deterioration of specially protected property".

The Brasilia demonstrators were protesting Bolsonaro's defeat by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in an October election and calling for a military coup to oust Lula and restore the far-right leader.

(Reporting by Ricardo Brito; Editing by Steven Grattan)

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