Facebook bows to Brazil court order, bans pro-Bolsonaro profiles

Facebook has announced it has obeyed a Brazilian judge’s order for a worldwide block on the accounts of 12 of President Jair Bolsonaro’s supporters who are under investigation for allegedly running a fake news network.

Supreme Court Justice Alexandre de Moraes on Friday night said the company had failed to fully comply with a previous ruling ordering the accounts to be shut down, saying they were still online and publishing by changing their registration to locations outside Brazil.

Facebook issued a statement saying it had complied due to the threat of criminal liability for an employee in Brazil.

But it called the new order “extreme”, saying it poses a “threat to freedom of expression outside of Brazil’s jurisdiction and conflicting with laws and jurisdictions worldwide”, and that it would appeal to the full court.

Facebook also argued it had complied with the previous order by “restricting the ability for the target Pages and Profiles to be seen from IP locations in Brazil”.

“People from IP locations in Brazil were not capable of seeing these Pages and Profiles even if the targets had changed their IP location,” the company said.

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