Brazil’s ex-President Lula turns himself in to police

Brasilia, April 8: Brazil’s former President Luiz Icio Lula da Silva turned himself in to federal police on Saturday, after supporters tried to prevent him from handing himself over to the authorities. After supporters blocked his vehicle, Lula left the headquarters of the Metalworkers’ Union in this city in Sao Paulo state on foot, reports Xinhua. The embattled former head of state had spent the last two nights in the building, where he began his political career as a union leader.  Lula, who insists he is innocent of wrongdoing, denied that he was trying to evade justice by ignoring a judge’s order to surrender to federal police, after his lawyers lost their latest appeal against their client’s 12-year sentence for alleged corruption. He has maintained the charges that he accepted the gift of a luxury apartment from construction giant Odebrecht (now called OAS S.A) in return for government building contracts were politically motivated to prevent Brazil’s leading progressive candidate from taking part in the electoral process. (IANS)