Court rejects MP’s appeal in Operation Influencer case and reduces coercion measures


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The Lisbon Court of Appeal (TRL) today rejected the appeal by the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) in the Operation Influencer case and decided to reduce the coercive measures, leaving the defendants with only a Term of Identity and Residence (TIR).

“This court decided to dismiss the appeal by the Public Prosecutor’s Office and to uphold the appeals filed by the defendants. At issue in these proceedings were the coercion measures imposed on five individual defendants and one corporate defendant, with the Public Prosecutor’s Office seeking their aggravation and the appellant defendants seeking their revocation,” says the TRL decision, to which Lusa had access.

The previous legislature was interrupted following the resignation of Prime Minister António Costa, after it was revealed that he was the subject of an investigation launched by the Public Prosecutor’s Office at the Supreme Court of Justice following the extraction of a certificate from the Operation Influencer criminal case.

The President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, accepted the resignation and two days later announced to the country the dissolution of parliament and the calling of elections, which took place on March 10, giving the PSD/CDS-PP/PPM a majority.

At the time, Operation Influencer led to the arrest of Vítor Escária (António Costa’s chief of staff), Diogo Lacerda Machado (António Costa’s consultant and friend), the directors of Start Campus Afonso Salema and Rui Oliveira Neves, and the mayor of Sines, Nuno Mascarenhas, who were released after questioning by the courts.

There are also other defendants, including the now former Infrastructure Minister João Galamba, the former president of the Portuguese Environment Agency, Nuno Lacasta, the former PS spokesman João Tiago Silveira and Start Campus.

The case is related to the production of energy from hydrogen in Sines, Setúbal, and the project to build a data center in the industrial and logistics area of Sines by Start Campus.

Hervé Hubert
Hervé Hubert
Hervé Hubert is a 55-year-old writer and journalist based in Porto, Portugal. Born in France, he brings a unique blend of French and Portuguese perspectives to his work. Education Hervé studied Journalism and Literature at the University of Lyon in France. After completing his studies, he gained valuable experience working with various French media outlets (Portugal France also). Career He worked for several years as a journalist in France before making the move to Portugal. In Porto, he joined the Portugal Pulse team as a staff writer. Skills Hervé specializes in storytelling, investigative journalism, and cultural commentary. He has a flair for capturing complex issues in a relatable way. Personal Life He currently resides in Porto and enjoys the city's rich culture, from Fado music to Francesinha cuisine. Hervé continues to maintain strong ties to his French heritage, often traveling back to France for family visits and cultural exploration. With his unique background and diverse skill set, Hervé Hubert adds a layered, multicultural lens to every story he covers.

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