Brazil judge fines Bolsonaro allies millions after ‘bad faith’ election challenge | Brazil

The head of Brazil’s electoral court has rejected a complaint from outgoing president Jair Bolsonaro’s party challenging October’s run-off vote, which he lost, court documents show.

Alexandre de Moraes, who is also a supreme court justice, also fined the parties in Bolsonaro’s coalition 22.9m reais ($4.3m) for what the court described as bad faith litigation, the document released on Wednesday show.

Bolsonaro challenged the Brazilian presidential election he lost last month to Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, arguing votes from some machines should be “invalidated”.

His coalition said its audit of the 30 October second-round runoff between Bolsonaro and Lula had found “signs of irreparable … malfunction” in some electronic voting machines.

“There were signs of serious failures that generate uncertainties and make it impossible to validate the results generated” in older models of the voting machines, Bolsonaro allies said in their complaint. As a result, they urged that the votes from those models should be “invalidated”.

Bolsonaro has for years claimed Brazil’s electronic voting system is liable to fraud, without providing substantiating evidence.

Lula’s victory has been ratified by the superior electoral court and acknowledged by Brazil’s leading politicians and international allies. Bolsonaro himself has authorised his government to begin preparing for a presidential transition in the days after October’s run-off election.

Earlier, Gleisi Hoffmann, the president of Lula’s Workers party, described Bolsonaro’s election complaint as “chicanery”.

“No more procrastination, irresponsibility, insults to institutions and democracy,” she wrote on Twitter. “The election was decided in the vote and Brazil needs peace to build a better future.”