Justice denies habeas corpus to lawyer suspected of stealing cryptocurrency from brokerage

Federal prosecutors rejected a petition for habeas corpus for a lawyer from Maranhão suspected of being part of a gang that stole cryptocurrencies over the internet. The criminal group in question became the target of an international investigation conducted by the American FBI.

At the request of the US authorities, two suspects were arrested by the Federal Police in August 2022. Two suspects were arrested during Operation Bit Tracking.

They are accused of robbing a major US cryptocurrency exchange, which has not been named in the current course of the investigation. However, the suspects remain in jail in Brazil and are being investigated for their internet crimes.

Lawyer suspected of stealing cryptocurrency files for habeas corpus, claiming authorities disrespected his workplace

According to information from the Federal Regional Court of the 1st Region (TRF1), the lawyer, who did not reveal his name, has filed a writ of habeas corpus. He intended to expunge the sentence of the 2nd Federal Court of Imperatriz (MA), which issued a search and seizure order in his residence.

According to the lawyer, his prerogatives of workplace immunity were not respected in complying with the search and seizure warrant. According to his defense, his home would also be used as a professional office in the legal profession.

The documents sent to the court show that the measure came in light of an investigation that began with news sent by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of the United States of America (USA). The investigation points to an alleged crime of bitcoin theft with evidence of the defendant’s participation.

Analyzing the process, the Rapporteur, Federal Judge Wilson Alves de Souza, stressed that according to legal provisions, the immunity of the attorney’s office or place of work is relative and that search and seizure can be carried out,”provided there is evidence of authorship and materiality of the commission of criminal offences, and due diligence must be accompanied by a representative of the OAB“.

By denying habeas corpus, the magistrate explained that the police authority had communicated that there was no detention of the material in the room where such documents were located, and that the personal card of the person under investigation was located with an indication of the office address at a different place of residence.

“Having said that, it should be emphasized that the device is clear in the sense of the immunity of the office or place of work, not referring to the lawyer’s place of residence. There must therefore be proof that the profession was practiced in the home of the patient, which has not been proven in this file.”

Maranhão’s OAB guided PF searches

As for the presence of the OAB, the magistrate explained that, “in this context it can be seen that the presence of the OAB in the diligence is intended to guarantee the professional practice of the lawyer and not as a personal privilege in criminal investigations that are not related to the professional activity“.

The rapporteur then concluded by denying the habeas corpus, accompanied by the 3rd panel of TRF1. In any case, the case is still under investigation by the Brazilian judiciary.

Source: Live Coins