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Bolsonaro’s Brawl With a Top Justice Tests Brazil’s Democracy

  • High court probe of fake news seen by some as crossing a line
  • Defenders say Bolsonaro is a danger who must be stopped
Jair Bolsonaro, left, and Alexandre de Moraes in Brasilia, on May 19.

Jair Bolsonaro, left, and Alexandre de Moraes in Brasilia, on May 19.

Photographer: Sergio Lima/AFP/Getty Images

In Latin America’s most significant election this year, Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro is facing stiff competition from Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, a leftist former president. However, an even bigger challenge may come from a Supreme Court judge.

Justice Alexandre de Moraes is leading a broad investigation into disinformation that keeps touching the president. Moraes has opened multiple criminal probes into Bolsonaro, ordered the arrest of some of his top backers and briefly banned Telegram, a social-media service often used by Bolsonaro supporters.