Wed, Aug 07, 2019 - Page 16 News List

Police handcuff a fan for chants against Bolsonaro

AP, SAO PAULO, Brazil

Brazilian police briefly took a fan into custody after he started chanting in protest of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro during a soccer match.

The Sao Paulo City Government on Monday confirmed that Rogerio Lemes Coelho was handcuffed and taken to a police station during Sunday’s 1-1 draw between hosts the Corinthians and archrivals the Palmeiras.

Lemes said that he was chanting at the Arena Corinthians against Brazil’s right-wing leader, who is a Palmeiras fan, when two police officers arrived.

The fan was released shortly afterward with no criminal charges.

“I was arrested, humiliated and handcuffed,” Lemes said. “They handcuffed me and took me to a room. They humiliated me. I am still in pain.”

Lemes posted photographs on social media of marks left by the handcuffs.

In their account to police, officers Pablo Alexandre Pires de Souza and Jaciel Ferreira da Silva said that they used “the necessary means” to stop Lemes from starting a fight.

The Sao Paulo State Military Police said in a statement that they do not take action motivated by political bias.

“[The police action] was made to preserve the fan’s physical integrity,” the statement said. “He pronounced words against the president, which caused animosity with other fans and had the potential to create a stir and generalized violence.”

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