Relationship rejects Benfica’s appeal on suspension of Rui Pinto’s case

The suspension is conditional on the creator of Football Leaks continuing to collaborate with the authorities.

The Lisbon Court of Appeal rejected the appeal filed by SAD do Benfica on the suspension of the judicial process in which Rui Pinto is suspected of illegitimately accessing the incarnate’s computer system and disclosing emails.

The court decision, which the Lusa agency had access to, thus confirms the provisional suspension proposed by the Public Ministry in July 2020 and accepted by the Criminal Investigation Judge.

At issue are five cases, in which Rui Pinto was being investigated, related to improper access to computer systems of various entities, including those of Benfica. The suspension is conditional on the creator of Football Leaks continuing to collaborate with the authorities.

This suspended process originated from a certificate extracted from the main proceedings, in which Benfica SAD acted as an assistant, known as the “emails case”, in which the communication director of FC Porto, Francisco J. Marques, the then director of Porto Canal, Júlio Magalhães, and a commentator for the television station are accused of violating correspondence and improper access, for publishing content from Benfica emails on Porto Canal.

SAD appealed the provisional suspension of the process, but judge Carlos Alexandre rejected the appeal, after which the ‘incarnates’ appealed to the Lisbon Court of Appeal.

The “incarnates” contested the suspension for not having been heard or notified about it, alleging that they did not know of the filing of a process on a matter that concerned them.

After considering the decision of the Criminal Investigation Judge’s agreement with the suspension of the process to be unappealable, the decision rendered today considers that it would be useless to send the case back to the JIC to rule on the request made by Benfica SAD, considering that the practice of useless acts in the process is prohibited.

Benfica SAD’s lawyers, after knowing the decision of the appeal, consider that “the real issue at stake, which is the exceeding of the rights of the victim / assistant by the right, in a provisional suspension of the process agreed and actually done in secret” and that the Court “protected itself on the alleged non-appealability of the JIC order that agreed to the provisional suspension of the process”.

“This was the topic that we would like to see analyzed by the higher courts, and it is, moreover, certain that it seems to us that the JIC order is appealable, (…) and we will continue to do what we can to have this recognized and, thus, so that one can analyze what really matters most in this case (…)”, the group of lawyers, composed of Rui Patrício, João Medeiros and Paulo Saragoça da Matta, told Lusa.

“Perhaps saying things even more directly: even though the Court recognizes that the rights of the victim/assistant were exceeded by the right, it justifies its non-decision with a supposed non-appealability of the JIC order”, reinforce the lawyers.

Rui Pinto is on trial at the Central Criminal Court of Lisbon, in the Football Leaks case, whose accusation excluded suspicions of being the perpetrator of the theft of Benfica emails in 2017.

The creator of the Football Leaks platform was in preventive detention from March 22, 2019 until April 8, 2020.

The change in the coercive measure was decided by the judge in charge of the case, Margarida Alves, following an application submitted by the defendant’s defense requesting his release, taking into account the “continuous and consistent collaboration” with the Judiciary Police (PJ) and the “critical sense” of the creator of the Football Leaks platform, despite opposition from the MP.

Rui Pinto is on trial for 90 crimes: 68 for improper access, 14 for breaching correspondence, six for illegitimate access and also for computer sabotage to Sporting’s SAD and for attempted extortion from the Doyen investment fund.

In September 2019, the MP accused Rui Pinto of 147 crimes, 75 of which of illegitimate access, 70 of violation of correspondence, one of computer sabotage and one of attempted extortion, for accessing the computer systems of Sporting, Doyen, law firm PLMJ, the Portuguese Football Federation and the Attorney General’s Office (PGR).

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Relationship rejects Benfica’s appeal on suspension of Rui Pinto’s case

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