- Associated Press - Thursday, May 17, 2012

SAO PAULO (AP) - A federal judge has sentenced a former law student to 17 months in prison for using Twitter to incite prejudice and discrimination against people from Brazil’s impoverished northeast.

A court statement says that Judge Monica Camargo converted the sentence against Mayara Petruso to community service and a fine of about $250.

Petruso’s 2010 Twitter message urged people to kill northeastern Brazilians in reprisal for Dilma Rousseff’s victory in that year’s presidential election.

Rousseff enjoyed wide support in the northeast and won a majority of the votes there.

Residents of Brazil’s wealthier south often look down on people from the poorer northeast.

The statement says Petruso acknowledged she posted the message because Rousseff won the election.

The court says Petruso can appeal the ruling. Calls to her attorneys went unanswered.

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