SBPC protests in the strongest possible terms against the judicial and police actions that led to the detention of managers, ex-managers and academics at the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) on 6 December, in an operation to investigate alleged embezzlement in the construction of the Political Amnesty Memorial in Brazil. The police action has left the academic community at UFMG – and indeed the whole country – in shock at the way in which it was carried out. There can be no justification for the use of force without a due summons, nor for the disregard of the rights, as citizens, of the Rector and Vice-Rectors, and other UFMG directors and staff. Turning judicial actions into a show is not compatible with a democratic society. It is an attack on individual dignity and rights, and could lead to a priori judgement and unjust condemnation. Actions like those that took place previously at the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC), and recently at UFMG, are taking us back to the times of the dictatorship, against which the SBPC fought determinedly, alongside so many Brazilians.