The STF has 3 votes in favor and 1 against the acceptance of racism in the police approach; Voting will resume on Wednesday

Ministers analyzed a habeas corpus filed in favor of a black man convicted of drug trafficking in 2020; There are still seven votes to determine whether there was racism in this case

Dorivan Marinho/SCO/STF STF facade
Headquarters of the Federal Supreme Court, in Brasilia

Ministers of Federal Court of Justice (STF) analyzed this Thursday, 2, a habeas corpus filed in favor of a black man convicted of drug trafficking in 2020 in the interior of São Paulo. The judgment determines whether the so-called “racial profiling”, which characterizes racism in the police approach, would invalidate the evidence gathered against the accused. Three ministers voted to consider the legal evidence. André Mendonca, toffoli day It Alexandre de Moraes did not agree with the reporter, the minister Edson Fachin, who defended the disregard of the evidence. The man was initially sentenced to 7 years and 11 months in prison for drug trafficking. O Supreme Court of Justice (STJ) reduced the sentence to 2 years and 11 months. The approach of the police happened in Bauru, in the interior of São Paulowhile the man was standing on the curb next to a car, 1.53 grams of cocaine were found on him.

Throughout the investigations, the policemen who participated in the action confirmed that the approach was carried out only because the suspect was black. Edson Fachin argued that the approach was discriminatory: “The justice system has not yet shown that it has disabled the network of stereotypes that ascribe negative social meanings to bodies of color that legitimize violence, including state violence. As is unequivocally the case with the mass incarceration of blacks, especially for trafficking crimes resulting in the standard and extent of what we are dealing with here. It is necessary to state that the element of race ends up, in this context, perverted and used to distinguish subjects who are victims of the mortality of police activities”.

André Mendonça was the first to disagree with Fachin and stated that the suspect was in the right context for a justified police action: “We had a public place that was very well known for drug trafficking. They were at a distance, they sounded the siren, when they sounded the siren both people tried to escape. Medicines are found effectively with the patient. He still attempts to hide a quantity, in addition to the captured quantity, another quantity is left behind after he destroyed it in an attempt to escape. That is, with all due respect, in this particular case I do not understand that there is a reason for the patient”. There are still votes from seven ministers and the trial is due to resume next Wednesday, the 8th.

*With information from journalist João Vitor Rocha

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