Brasilia: Outgoing Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has pardoned security forces convicted of crimes committed more than 30 years ago, which legal experts say applies to agents found guilty of an infamous prison massacre in 1992.
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The far-right leader’s decree, which is part of a traditional Christmas pardoning and comes nine days before he leaves office, gives a pass to officers whose crimes “were not considered extremely serious” and were committed in the line of duty more than three decades ago, an official document said.
The measure would, therefore, pardon 74 police officers convicted in the massacre at Sao Paulo’s Carandiru prison on October 2, 1992, when 111 detainees were killed in a military police intervention to control a riot, according to specialists.
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While prosecutors said the prisoners were executed, the defense maintained that members of the military police were acting in self-defense.
Carandiru prison was closed following the episode.
Although the agents were tried and sentenced, they have so far lived free thanks to multiple appeals, according to the Brazilian press.