Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro
Who Is Jair Bolsonaro? Photo by Evaristo SA/AFP via Getty Images

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was ordered to pay compensation for moral damages to a Brazilian female journalist. He was convicted for making sexist remarks and accused her of offering sexual favors. In 2020, newspaper reporter Patricia Campos Mello was publicly named by the president while suggesting she traded sexual favors to gather sensitive information on an investigative piece about the 2018 Brazilian presidential election. Mello sued Bolsonaro gaining a 4-1 vote in her favor at the Court of Justice of Sao Paolo on Wednesday.

According to The Brazilian Report, the court confirmed Bolsonaro’s conviction on the charges against him for his derogatory statements about Mello. The Sao Paolo appellate court ordered the president to pay 35,000 reais or about $6,700 to Mello.

Although a similar accusation also followed Bolosonaro’s statements from a former employee of Yacows digital marketing company identified as Hans River Nascimento, the case was tossed out due to technicality and Nascimento ended up with a conviction for defamation. He was ordered to pay Mello BRL 50 thousand ($9,600). Nascimento was a source used by Mello in an article she had published for the newspaper where she revealed the use of the names and the National Persons Register of the elderly to register cellphone chips in order to blast messages through WhatsApp during the election campaign. The court determined that Nascimento’s testimony was a lie, citing that his criticism of Mello focused on her status as a woman and not her work and that it gave form to sexism.

In 2021, Bolsonaro’s son, Eduardo, was also sentenced to pay Mello over $5000 for claiming that Mello attempted to seduce sources in order to gain access to damaging information about his father.

It was in 2018 when Folha de S. Paulo, one of Brazil’s biggest news dailies released a report by Mello where it stated that an illegal bulk of messaging schemes were set up to benefit Bolsonaro during the presidential election campaign. Since taking his seat in the government, Bolsonaro has been known to attack journalists, naming them the government’s enemy. Based on reports by the National Federation of Journalists, in 2021 alone, the vocal Brazilian leader has made 430 attacks against the press.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro speaks during the Presentation of Food Donation Program at Planalto Palace on November 11, 2021 in Brasilia, Brazil. The program Comida no Prato aims to connect companies who want to donate food with institutions that are able to receive them for distribution to those in need. The levels of poverty and hunger grew in Brazil in 2020 and 2021, fueled by the effects of the pandemic. Photo by Andressa Anholete/Getty Images

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