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Brazil: Violation of an Attorney';s Rights Will Soon Be Criminalized

(July 2, 2008) On May 20, 2008, the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies approved a proposal for a law that defines the crime of infringement of an attorney's rights and prerogatives. According to Marcus Vinícius, a member of the federal section of the Brazilian Bar Association (Ordem dos Advogados do Brasil), when the proposal is finally approved and becomes law, all types of violations against the legal profession foreseen in the Lawyer's Statute, Law No. 8,906 of July 4, 1994 (Estatuto da Advocacia e a Ordem dos Advogados do Brasil), will become crimes. Vinícius gave as an example of infringement the situation in which the police deny an attorney the right to have access to a client's criminal inquiry; heretofore there has been no punishment for the police officer or public servant who denies such access. (Câmara Aprova Projeto que Criminaliza Violação das Prerrogativas, JURID, May 21, 2008, available at