Jair Bolsonaro
Brazil's former President Jair Bolsonaro. Twitter

The water former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is in got even hotter this week, after a former Army Chief revealed that he approached the top brass with a plan to conduct a coup following his electoral loss against Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in late 2022.

Marco Freire Gomes made the statement to authorities investigating Bolsonaro's intent to stay in power. The case is being overseen by the country's Supreme Court.

While many former officials have already spoken about the former president's plans, this is the first time in which his name is directly link with a formal document.

Initially found in the house of former Justice Minister Anderson Torres, Gomes said the draft is the same that Bolsonaro showed him in a meeting in December 2022. Concretely, it proposed declaring a state of defense and reversing the result of the presidential elect.

Gomes added that he told Bolsonaro the Army "would not accept any act of institutional rupture." According to recounts from other officials present in the meetings, both him and Air Force commander Brigadier Baptista Júnior spoke against the initiative, while the head of the Navy, Admiral Almir Garnier, was willing to move forward.

Then-Justice Minister Torres also took part in the meetings, Gomes said, and explained the "legal measures that could be taken" to support the document. Torres has repeatedly denied he took the document to Bolsonaro and told authorities the document was "disposable."

It's the second time in a little over a month that a former official links Bolsonaro with the document. In early February, Mauro Cid, a former aide of Bolsonaro who entered a plea deal in the context of the investigation, said the former president received the the draft of a decree that would call for new elections and imprison opposition members.

President-Elect Lula Da Silva Meets President of Superior Electoral Tribunal in Brasilia
Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva Andressa Anholete/Getty Images.

Following Cid's statements, police conducted 33 raids across the country. Bolsonaro wasn't among the subjects, but he was told to surrender his passport. Police also issued for preemptive arrest warrants, one of which is destined to Filipe Martins, Bolsonaro's special aide for international affairs.

Federal police issued a statement saying the actions are related to an alleged criminal enterprise that "acted to attempt a coup" and sought to keep Bolsonaro in power after his defeat against Lula da Silva.

The group, it added, was preparing to claim electoral fraud, something that would have paved the way for a military intervention. It would have also arrested Supreme Court Justices Alexander De Moraes and Gilmar Mendes, as well as Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco. However, that didn't happen due to lack of support from key officials.

Outraged over Bolsonaro's loss to Lula in Brazil's polarizing October 30 runoff, thousands of his supporters overwhelmed security to storm the seat of power in Brasilia a week after Lula's inauguration, calling for a military intervention to oust the newly installed president.

They ran riot inside the three buildings, smashing windows, throwing furniture into fountains, vandalizing artworks and turning the Senate's central dais into a slide.

Bolsonaro, who was in the United States at the time, has rejected any wrongdoing. In June, electoral authorities barred him from running for office for eight years over his unproven allegations that Brazil's electronic voting system was vulnerable to large-scale fraud.

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