Decision determines that the owner of X (former Twitter) refrains from disobeying court orders; If suspended profiles come back online, the fine is R$100,000 per day

The minister of the STF (Supreme Federal Court) Alexandre de Moraes determined this Sunday (Apr 7, 2024) the inclusion of the owner of X (former Twitter), Elon Musk, as being investigated in the digital militia investigation, filed in July 2021 and which investigates groups that would be acting against democracy. The document cites “intentional criminal instrumentalization”. Understand more below.

Moraes also determined that the platform does not disobey“any court order already issued”. The requirement extends to reactivating profiles already blocked by determination of the STF or the TSE (Superior Electoral Court). The daily fine is R$100,000 in case of non-compliance. The decision comes after the owner of X escalated his tone against the STF minister throughout the weekend. Here’s the complete (PDF – 161 kB).

In the present hypothesis, therefore, the use of illegal mechanisms by “X” is characterized; as well as the presence of strong evidence of intent on the part of the CEO of the social network ‘X’, Elon Musk, in the criminal instrumentalization previously identified and investigated in several investigations”, wrote the minister – however, the billionaire is not CEO of X; this position is currently held by Linda Yaccarino.

Until then, the platforms were included in the context of fake news and digital militia investigations only as having been used to commit crimes by their users. With Musk’s actions, the minister raises the hypothesis that there was intention on the part of the platform and the owner’s awareness of criminal practices.

“This evident connection, in particular, points to the permanent and habitual criminal exploitation of providers of social networks and private messaging services, for the practice of numerous and very serious criminal offenses, whose signs of intentional conduct, however, until now were not available. gifts”, he wrote.

The minister also argues that it is “unacceptable” that the representatives of X “unknown” the criminal exploitation of the platform by “digital militias”. Moraes mentions meetings he had with representatives of various platforms in 2023 and 2024 as president of the TSE to discuss the topic and think about regulatory proposals.

Thus, Moraes ordered the opening of a new investigation to investigate Musk’s conduct in relation to the crimes of obstruction of justice, criminal organization and incitement to crime.

This Sunday’s document (Apr 7) states that Musk’s comments over the weekend constitute, “in theory, abuse of economic power, by trying to illegally impact public opinion”. OX is also accused of “induce the maintenance of criminal conduct practiced by digital militias” investigated in an investigation of the same name.

The comments Moraes refers to began in the early hours of Saturday (6 April). Elon Musk He asked why the minister “not Brazil demands so much censorship”, when replying to a post yours from January 11th.

The businessman’s comment came following accusations made by North American journalist Michael Shellenberger on Wednesday (April 3). According to Shellenberger, the minister has “led a case of widespread repression of freedom of expression in Brazil”.

In Moraes’ determination, the minister states that the X businessman started a “disinformation campaign about the actions of the Federal Supreme Court and the Superior Electoral Court” on Saturday (6.Apr) which was reiterated on Sunday (7.Apr) “instigating disobedience […] and obstruction of justice, including in relation to criminal organizations”.

The criticism escalated and Musk said that he is thinking about closing Twitter in Brazil and that he will publicize Moraes’ demands that violate laws. The businessman also talked about reactivating profiles that were blocked by court decisions.

He called the minister “tyrant”, “totalitarian” e “draconiano”saying he should “resign or be impeached”.


In an official note, X these who will go to court because he believes that the court orders to block accounts “are not in accordance with the Marco Civil da Internet or the Federal Constitution of Brazil”.

Until the publication of this report, Minister Alexandre de Moraes –who has his own profile on X– had not publicly commented on Musk’s statements.

To the Poder360, The STF press office informed that the Supreme Court will not comment on the case.

Know more:


On Wednesday (April 3), American journalist Michael Shellenberger published an alleged exchange of emails between employees of the legal sector of X in Brazil between 2020 and 2022 talking about requests and court orders received regarding content of their users.

The messages would show requests from various instances of the Brazilian Judiciary requesting personal data from users who used hashtags about the electoral process and content moderation.

Shellenberger specifically criticized STF (Supreme Federal Court) minister Alexandre de Moraes, criticizing him for “leading a case of widespread repression of freedom of expression in Brazil”. According to him, Moraes issued decisions by the TSE (Superior Electoral Court) that “threaten democracy in Brazil” when asking for interventions in publications by members of the National Congress and personal account data – which would violate the platform’s guidelines. The records of the processes mentioned in the case are confidential.

The case was named Twitter Files Brazil in reference to the Twitter Files originally published in 2022, after Musk purchased X, in October of that year.

At the time, Musk delivered material to journalists that indicated how the social network, in the 2020 North American elections, collaborated with United States authorities to block users and suppress stories involving the son of the country’s presidential candidate Joe Biden.

The files published by journalists include email exchanges that reveal, to some extent, how Twitter reacted to requests from governments to intervene in the policy of publishing and removing content. In some cases, the social network ended up giving in.

In the Brazilian case, Musk was not indicated as the source who provided the material, however, the businessman criticized Moraes for a few days. Read the top comments:


8.abr.2024 (09h33) – Unlike what had been published in this post, o American journalist Michael Shellenberger said that minister Alexandre de Moraes has “led a wide-ranging case repression of freedom of expression No brazil”, and not “led a case of broad freedom of expression in Brazil”. The text has been corrected and updated.


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