Defense for Brazil's Temer asks Supreme Court to send back new charges

Brazil's President Michel Temer attends a ceremony in Brain Institute in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes (Reuters)

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Lawyers defending Brazilian President Michel Temer on Friday asked Supreme Court Justice Edson Fachin to send back to the prosecutor's general office the new graft charges that were presented against Temer on Thursday. Temer's defense said in the request that the new charges are irregular because they cite events that presumably happened before he became president. Under the Brazilian Constitution, a sitting president cannot be charged for possible crimes committed by him before he took office. Those charges would have to wait until he leaves to be taken to the courts. The corruption charges presented on Thursday were the second Temer could face. A first set of criminal charges saying that Temer took bribes from meatpacker JBS SA was blocked in August by his allies in the lower house of Congress, which has the power to decide whether a president should stand trial by the Supreme Court. Temer's lawyers said the second set of charges should return to the prosecutor's general office for reevaluation. They want the cases that happened before he took office to be scrapped from the charges. It is not clear when Fachin would evaluate their request. (Reporting by Ricardo Brito; Writing by Marcelo Teixeira; Editing by Leslie Adler)