National Justice Council to investigate Judge Ivan Sartori

In September, the São Paulo Court of Appeals judge voted to annul the Carandiru massacre trial

In September, the São Paulo Court of Appeals judge voted to annul the Carandiru massacre trial In September, the São Paulo Court of Appeals judge voted to annul the Carandiru massacre trial

The CNJ (National Justice Council) decided on Friday, December 16, to open an investigation into Appellate Judge Ivan Sartori, of the São Paulo State Court of Appeals, for his conduct in the judgement of an appeal against the Carandiru massacre case. In his vote, given in September, Judge Sartori called for the annulment of the trial court jury and the acquittal of the 74 military police officers convicted of the murder of 111 prisoners in the Carandiru Detention Center in 1992.

Click here to read the decision of the CNJ in full.

At the time, the judge said “there was no massacre, it was legitimate self-defense”. Afterwards, he used the social networks to insinuate that the negative repercussions of his decision were related to the financing of the press and human rights organizations by organized crime.

In October, more than 60 jurists, journalists and non-governmental organizations – among them Conectas – sent a disciplinary complaint to the CNJ calling for Sartori’s temporary suspension and an investigation into abuse, breach of decorum, lack of isonomy and impartiality in the handling of the case.

In the decision signed on Friday, Internal Affairs Commissioner João Otávio de Noronha denied the request for the judge’s suspension, but agreed to open investigations “in order to determine whether there was any violation of functional duties” by Sartori. The appellate judge has 15 days to respond.

If it is concluded that there were indeed irregularities in his handling of the case, the CNJ could initiate disciplinary administrative proceedings against Sartori, which would be judged by all the members of the Council. If he is found guilty, the judge may be forced into retirement.

“The decision of the CNJ to investigate the case is an important recognition that the Judiciary is aware of the irresponsible and fanciful positions of Ivan Sartori,” said Rafael Custódio, coordinator of the Justice program at Conectas. “The appellate judge offended the families of the victims and he offended Brazilian history, which certainly recognizes the Carandiru massacre as one of its darkest and most shameful chapters,” he added.

Featuring among the other organizations, besides Conectas, that signed the disciplinary complaint are the Brazilian Public Security Forum, Justiça Global, the Gaspar Garcia Human Rights Center, the Justice and Peace Commission and the Vladimir Herzog Institute. The document was also endorsed by public figures, jurists and academics such as José Luiz Del Rojo, José Carlos Dias, Maria Stella Gregori, José Gregori, Luiz Carlos Bresser Pereira and Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro.

Click here to read the disciplinary complaint filed against Sartori.


Find out more

Receive Conectas updates by email