Rui Pinto, who had been in pre-trial detention since March 22nd 2019, was placed under house arrest on Wednesday.
Rui Pinto, creator of Football Leaks and author of the revelations of Luanda Leaks, presents “now a critical sense and a willingness to collaborate with justice,” according to the court order that determined the change in the measure of duress.
Rui Pinto, who had been in pre-trial detention since March 22nd 2019, was placed under house arrest on Wednesday, but in houses made available by the Judicial Police (PJ) and without access to the Internet, by decision of the Criminal Investigation Court of Lisbon.
The order of the Criminal Investigation Judge (JIC) Cláudia Pina, to which the Lusa agency had access on Thursday, says that, “analyzing the pretension” of the defendant regarding the alteration of the measure of duress and “the information sent” by the PJ, it can be seen that at this moment “the prudential requirements are altered” regarding the application of pre-trial detention, adding that a less serious measure of duress “sufficiently assures against the dangers of escape, preservation of evidence and continuation of criminal activity”.
“On the one hand, the accused has reversed his position, now presenting a critical sense and a willingness to collaborate with justice, on the other hand, at the moment the borders are subject to high controls due to the pandemic, which in itself reduces the danger of escape, and it is also important to stress that the accused should be given, as any other citizen, the best possible conditions to remain healthy and safe,” justifies the JIC.
The order adds that the PJ “has the means to ensure that the accused does not persist in criminal activity or is able to destroy evidence, ensuring that he is housed in a place under its control, without access to the Internet”.
The JIC authorizes Rui Pinto to have company or to receive visits from parents, close relatives or girlfriends, as long as it is guaranteed that they do not have devices that allow access to the Internet.
In a statement sent to Lusa on Wednesday, the lawyers defending Rui Pinto were satisfied with the change in the measure of duress.
“Rui Pinto’s defense welcomes this decision, and trusts that other steps will be taken towards the total freedom of his constituent, whose revelations have already greatly contributed to the fight against serious crime, particularly in the area of economic crime,” stressed lawyers William Bourdon, Francisco Teixeira da Mota and Luísa Teixeira da Mota.
In possession of the investigation are ten hard disks encrypted by Rui Pinto and to which the PJ has not yet been able to access.
In September 2019, the Public Prosecutor’s Office charged Rui Pinto with 147 crimes, 75 of which were illegitimate access, 70 of which were violation of correspondence, seven of which were aggravated, one of computer sabotage and one of attempted extortion, for accessing the computer systems of Sporting, Doyen, the PLMJ law firm, the Portuguese Football Federation and the Attorney General’s Office, and the subsequent disclosure of dozens of confidential documents from these entities.
After being arrested in Hungary and sent to Portugal under a European arrest warrant, Rui Pinto took over the delivery of a hard drive to the Platform for the Protection of Whistleblowers in Africa, which allowed the revelation of the Luanda Leaks, a case of corruption related to Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos.