Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva can be jailed on corruption charges, the country’s supreme court has ruled, dismissing an application to allow him to remain free pending an appeal against those charges.

The country’s top court has voted 6-5 to deny Lula’s plea and ruled he must start serving a 12-year prison sentence for graft. According to the ruling, Lula may now be detained at any time and will likely not be allowed to run for the country’s top seat in October.

'US doesn't want a strong & independent player in Latin America' – frmr president of #Brazil

— RT (@RT_com) April 1, 2018

The popular 72-year-old politician, who is leading in all opinion polls ahead of the October presidential elections, was convicted of money laundering and passive corruption last July. The Supreme Federal Court’s (STF) decision may put an end to da Silva’s expected return to politics.

Commonly known as Lula, the Brazilian Workers’ Party icon recently spoke on an RT Spanish show hosted by Ecuador’s former president Rafael Correa, where he argued that corruption charges have become an “instrument in the moral and ethical fight against opponents.”

Lula called the charges against him “false,” and said there was a massive media campaign against him and another former Brazilian president, Dilma Rousseff. “There is a conspiracy in Brazil between the media, the judiciary, the prosecution service and police,” said Lula.