Recent corruption and police misconduct cases in Brazil seem to signal impunity is giving way to justice, but the country has yet to confront its history of dictatorship-era human rights violations.
Some 38 people are accused of buying political favors under former President Lula - whose future career could hinge on the trial.
Brazil on Thursday became the sixth country in Latin America, in addition to Mexico City, to extend rights to gay and lesbian couples but stopped short of legalizing gay marriage.
In Argentina, and elsewhere in Latin America, victims of brutal dictatorships are finally getting their day in court. But by trying former officials who were given amnesty, are nations reopening old political wounds?