The Supreme Court of Brazil authorised a probe against executives at Telegram and Alphabet’s Google on Friday.
Justice Alexandre de Moraes decided to begin an investigation at the request of Lower House Speaker Arthur Lira after tech companies campaigned against the bill on their platforms.
They later withdrew the posts in response to Supreme Court instructions.
Justice Moraes handed the federal police 60 days to conduct their investigation and directed them to identify and question all individuals responsible at the firms for the “abusive campaign” against the bill.
According to Lira’s request, IT giants have used “all sorts of tricks in a sordid campaign of disinformation, manipulation, and intimidation, taking advantage of their hegemonic position in the market.”
Instead of leaving it to the courts, the bill would place the onus on internet businesses, search engines, and social messaging platforms to locate and report illegal content, and would levy heavy fines for failure to do so.