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FILE PHOTO: Former speaker of Brazil's Lower House of Congress, Eduardo Cunha (C), is escorted by federal police officers as he leaves the Institute of Forensic Science in Curitiba, Brazil, October 20, 2016. REUTERS/Rodolfo Buhrer/File photo

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SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazil's former speaker of the lower house, Eduardo Cunha, was found guilty and sentenced to more than 15 years in prison on corruption charges on Thursday, according to the ruling from a federal court.

The former politician's defense team said they would appeal the decision but Cunha will remain imprisoned pending appeal.

Cunha, who drove the successful impeachment of former President Dilma Rousseff, was forced from his position as speaker in July and arrested in October on accusations he received millions in bribes from the purchase of an oil field in Benin by state-run oil company Petrobras.

(Reporting by Brad Brooks; Editing by Daniel Flynn)

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