Sao Paulo judge transfers Lula charges to Curitiba

An inflatable doll known as "Pixuleco" of Brazil's former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is seen during a protest against Rousseff, part of nationwide protests calling for her impeachment, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, March 13, 2016. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - A judge in Sao Paulo transferred on Monday pending charges against former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to the federal court in Curitiba, citing an "undeniable connection" to a broad investigation into kickbacks at state-run oil firm Petrobras. State prosecutors in Sao Paulo asked for an arrest warrant for Lula last week after charging him with money laundering and identity fraud for concealing ownership of a beach front apartment, a process that was previously separate from the vast corruption probe Judge Sergio Moro oversees in southern Brazil city of Curitiba. (Reporting by Caroline Stauffer; Editing by Chris Reese)