Brazil: Jewish Judge Becomes 1st Jewish Supreme Court Chief Justice

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Luis Fux, Brazil's 1st Jewish Supreme Court Chief Justice (Photo: Creative Commons)

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Luiz Fux, the first Jewish justice on Brazil’s highest court is now the first head of the Federal Supreme Court, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported.

Every two years, one of the 11 justices of Brazil’s Federal Supreme Court serves as chief justice and Fux was unanimously chosen on Thursday at its next chief justice. His term will begin on September 10.

“I will always strive for moral values, republican values and the struggle for democracy,” Fux, 67, said Thursday in a speech. “May G-d protect me.”

Fux was born in Rio de Janeiro. His grandparents fled to Brazil from Romania during World War II and his grandmother eventually served as president of the Israelite Children’s Home in Rio.

“It’s a great pride for the Brazilian Jewish community to have Luiz Fux at the head of the Supreme Court,” Fernando Lottenberg, president of the Brazilian Israelite Confederation, told JTA. “He has deep legal knowledge and well-known humanism, in line with the Jewish tradition of valuing knowledge and life.”

The Brazilian president appoints Supreme Court justices and Fux was appointed by ex-Brazilian Dilma Rousseff president in 2011. Rousseff was impeached and removed from office in 2016.

In 2013, the court gained its second Jewish justice when Luis Roberto Barroso was appointed, also by Rousseff. Last month, Barroso was also elected as the President of the Superior Electoral Court.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)