Brasilia [Brazil], August 3 (ANI/Sputnik): Brazil's Supreme Electoral Court (TSE) asked the Supreme Court (STF) to investigate President Jair Bolsonaro's criticism of electronic ballot boxes and the country's electoral system, as well as his statements claiming there will be fraud in next year's elections.
"Plenary [of the court session] approves the opening of an administrative inquiry to investigate fraud allegations in the electronic voting system. Ministers also approved the proposal to forward criminal news to the STF against the President of the Republic, Jair Bolsonaro, for the dissemination of fake news," the TSE said in a statement late on Monday.
Earlier on Monday, a group of 18 active and former Brazilian justices of the STF, who also serve as judges on the TSE, said the election system is free of fraud.
Since 2018, Bolsonaro, who is expected to seek a second term in 2022, has repeatedly said Brazil's electronic voting system is vulnerable to fraud. In this regard, the TSE itself unanimously approved the initiation of an administrative investigation into possible encroachments on the legitimacy of the elections.
The case was opened in March 2019 to investigate fake news, wrongdoing, and threats against the STF. As part of the case, some prominent Bolsonaro supporters were searched and their electronic devices and documents were seized.
Criticizing the electronic voting machines that have been operating in Brazil since 1996, the incumbent president recently said that holding the 2022 elections is impossible without going back to paper documents. The TSE said that attempts to interfere with the conduct of elections violated the constitution, so it can be regarded as an official crime. (ANI/Sputnik)