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>> A Brazilian appeals court on Wednesday upheld the corruption conviction of former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. A major blow to his planned presidential run later this year. All three judges in the court not only voted to upload Lois' convictions on taking bribes and money laundering, but also agreed that the prosecutor's request to lengthen his prison sentence.
His exclusion from the election would radically alter the political landscape ahead of a campaign in which Lula is and early favorite. Reuters correspondent Anthony Boto is in the capital of Brasilia.>> Today's decision is a big set back for the Workers Party on the left in Brazil. Despite the corruption in cases against him, Lula is still the most popular politician in this country.
Early polling shows that he is the front runner for the October election, with 36% of Brazilians say they would vote for him. That includes masses of people who were lifted from poverty by his social programs.>> But ultimately it will come down to Brazil's electoral court to make the final ruling on his candidacy.
>> Lula's exclusion from the race opens the way for a more center-right candidate to win the elections. And continue Brazil's economic reforms and fiscal austerity program. That is what investors want as we saw in the market today. The real currency strengthened 3% against the dollar and the stock market in Sao Paulo rose to a new record high.
>> Lula, Brazil's first working class leader and most influential politician, is one of scores of powerful leaders and businessmen caught up in sweeping corruption probes that have racked the Brazilian establishment. Lula was convicted last year after accepting a beach side apartment from an engineering firm vying for contacts with the state oil company known as Petrobras.
He also faces six other indictments in corruption cases ranging from receiving bribes to obstructing justice. Lula remains free pending future appeals.