Brazil politician attacks police with rifle and grenades, wounding two

A Brazilian politician has attacked federal police officers seeking to arrest him at his home, leading to an hours-long siege.

Roberto Jefferson, a former lawmaker and an ally of the president, Jair Bolsonaro, fired a rifle at police and threw grenades, wounding two officers in the rural municipality Comendador Levy Gasparian in Rio de Janeiro state on Sunday. He said in a video message sent to supporters on WhatsApp that he refused to surrender, though by early evening he was in custody.

The events come just days before Brazilians go to the polls to vote for their president. The country’s supreme court has sought to rein in the spread of disinformation and anti-democratic rhetoric ahead of the 30 October vote, often inviting the ire of Bolsonaro’s base who decry such actions as censorship. As part of these efforts, Jefferson was jailed preventatively for making threats against the court’s justices.

In January Jefferson received permission to serve his preventive arrest under…

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This article was written by Reuters and originally published on