The look of horror and disbelief on the face of 23-year-old Mariana Ferrer in a video of her rape trial is undeniable. The promoter of the event, who accused influential Brazilian businessman Andre Aranha, 42, of drugging and raping her, can hardly keep his cool as Aranha’s lawyer verbally abuse, as shown in video of the trial released on Tuesday by The Intercept Brasil.
Ferrer says Aranha, who has strong ties to Brazilian footballers, hired her in 2018 to promote the Tony Beach Florianopolis report in southern Brazil, then drugged and raped her. Aranha denies the rape charges and insisted Ferrer consented to sex.
During the trial, which took place via video link earlier this year, Aranha’s renowned lawyer Gaston da Rosa Filho aggressively suggests that Ferrer’s provocative photos on social media prove that she was “asking Aranha’s sexual advances. “I pray to God that my son never meets a woman like you,” he said to Ferrer.
We can hear Filho calling Ferrer’s rape a “little show” for financial gain. “There is no point in fake crying,” he said as the abuse continued. “Get your crocodile tears out of here.”
Ferrer, then in tears, then asked Judge Rudson Marcos to intervene to stop Filho’s barrage of insults. “Please, your honor, even the accused, even the murderers, are not treated the way I am treated,” he can be heard crying.
Filho argued that, at most, his client had committed “culpable rape” only because he did not realize that Ferrer was unable to consent. The judge ultimately acquitted Aranha of all charges, which sparked backlash among Brazilian football teams linked to Aranha. Several players tweeted # JustiçaPorMariFerrer, calling for justice for Ferrer.
Late Tuesday, Brazil’s National Council of Justice opened an investigation into the judge, both for his conduct in failing to prevent Filho from humiliating the rape victim and for his ultimate not guilty verdict.
“The scenes in Mariana Ferrer’s trial are appalling,” Brazilian Supreme Court judge Gilmar Mendes tweeted on Tuesday. “The justice system must be a place of refuge and not of torture and humiliation.”
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