Eduardo Appio pointed out Gabriela Hardt’s partiality – 05/25/2023 – Politics
Now a federal judge removed from Operation Lava Jato in Curitiba, Eduardo Appio has maintained since February his critical tone against authorities who had already passed through the same chair, such as Sergio Moro (now a senator) and Gabriela Hardt, the substitute judge of the 13th Court of Curitiba who now resumed the cases.
During the nearly four months in which he remained in charge of the task force, Appio constantly criticized the duo’s performance in his dispatches and, in one of his decisions, pointed out Hardt’s “partiality” to justify the release of assets and values to the businessman Márcio Pinto de Magalhães in a lawsuit derived from Lava Jato.
In an order signed on March 26, Appio began by saying that the defendant’s defense was again asking for the repeal of the restrictive measures on the grounds that Judge Hardt had already demonstrated “animosity towards the accused in the proceedings, as well as alleged association with members of the Federal Public Ministry who acted in this process”.
Subsequently, Appio stated that the dialogues attached to the process –obtained in the midst of Operation Spoofing, in which hacker access to messages exchanged between Lava Jato authorities on Telegram– were sufficient to identify that the defense was right in its request .
“Through the transcription of these dialogues, it is clear that there may have been, in fact, an association between the learned substitute judge of the case and the members of the so-called MPF task force, in order to place the prosecution in more favorable conditions than the defense,” wrote Appio.
In a long dispatch, he said that the impartiality of the judgment of the case is “the cornerstone of the fundamental guarantees of citizens provided for in the 1988 Constitution” and that, without it, “all citizens could be under the yoke of a police state” .
“This type of model was not accepted even in dark periods of our recent history, such as Nazi Germany or the Stalinist Soviet Union,” he continued.
Other criticisms were made by Appio.
Recently, the judge even released a video in support of a blogger from Curitiba who claimed that the site was at risk of “not standing up” if it had to pay the compensation won in court by Hardt.
In the video, Appio stated that he is an old reader of the blog, and that the work of the site is “of fundamental importance for the consolidation of democracy in the country”.
This Wednesday (24), the Sheet asked for an interview with the judge, but the advisor said she would not speak to the press. Appio was temporarily removed from his work in the Federal Court, by order of the special administrative court of the TRF4 (Federal Regional Court of the 4th Region) and, since then, he has not given an interview.
Appio has 15 days to explain the reasons for his alleged phone call in April to the son of the former Lava Jato rapporteur in the second instance, federal judge Marcelo Malucelli. In the phone call, the judge allegedly pretended to be someone else, apparently trying to prove the relationship.
The interlocutor who would be Appio ends the call abruptly, after asking Malucelli’s son if he “has been up to it”, in a tone that can be interpreted as a threat, according to members of the TRF-4 court.
Between February 8 and May 22, Appio signed controversial decisions. He ordered the arrest of money changer Alberto Youssef twice, revoked the accusation of money changer Nelma Kodama and unlocked R$ 35 million in assets linked to former Minister Antônio Palocci – all orders were later overturned by higher authorities.
The judge also overturned the arrest warrant that was still open against the lawyer and defendant Rodrigo Tacla Duran, turned into a witness protected by the judge. The lawyer lives in Spain.
After listening to Tacla Duran in a first hearing, Appio ordered the sending of the defendant’s reports to the STF (Federal Supreme Court) for the eventual opening of an investigation against Moro and federal deputy and former prosecutor Deltan Dallagnol.
At the second hearing, Tacla Duran mentioned an alleged bribery scheme involving former prosecutor Carlos Fernando Santos Lima, and the judge sent an official letter to the Federal Police for possible investigation. Those cited deny it and call the lawyer a “compulsive liar”.
Finally, Appio summoned Deltan to find out about his relationship with the attorney who currently acts in the processes involving Tacla Duran, Walter Jose Mathias Junior. He alleges that he needs to hear from the former prosecutor about whether there is “a personal and intimate bond of friendship” with the current member of the MPF.
The frequent movements in Tacla Duran’s processes drew the attention of Minister Dias Toffoli, who, on Monday (22), asked for a full copy of all decisions in the process and related documents.
This is because, since March, the processes have been suspended by order of Minister Ricardo Lewandoswki. “I verify that, apparently, the decision to suspend the feats was not respected”, notes Toffoli.
Also in March, Appio was also the target of a request for suspicion made by prosecutor Carolina Bonfadini de Sá, who said that the judge’s posture on the internet, in line with PT politicians, would compromise his performance in the trials.
For the press, Appio responded in different ways when asked about the login “LUL22” used by him until the beginning of the year to access the electronic system of Federal Justice – he publicly acknowledged the reference to the current president Lula (PT) only on Monday (22), during an interview with GloboNews, explaining that “it was an isolated and individual protest of mine against a prison that I considered illegal”.
Appio has also denied being the author of the donation worth R$13 to President Lula’s election campaign last year, although, on the TSE (Superior Electoral Court) website, there are two donations registered by the judge’s name and CPF. In addition to R$13 for Lula, R$40 for the then PT candidate for state deputy in Paraná, Ana Júlia Ribeiro.
But Appio analyzed the prosecutor’s request for suspicion only last Saturday (20), rejecting the piece, and when he was already officially on vacation. On the same date, he also signed his first Lava Jato sentence, acquitting the defendant.