Arrest order for Brasilia's security chief

A Brazilian Supreme Court judge has ordered the arrest of the capital's most recent public security chief after supporters of right-wing former President Jair Bolsonaro led a rampage through government buildings.

Justice Alexandre de Moraes ordered the arrest of Anderson Torres, who was Bolsonaro's justice minister before taking over this month as the public security chief for Brasilia, where thousands of protesters vandalised the Supreme Court, Congress and presidential offices on Sunday.

Torres, who was removed from office on Sunday, was not in the city when the riots occurred, having flown to Florida earlier this month.

In a post on Twitter on Tuesday, he said he would return to Brazil from Orlando, where he was holidaying with his family, and turn himself in.

Moraes also requested the arrest of Fabio Augusto Vieira, the head of Brasilia's military police, one of a number of officials responsible for protecting the key Brasilia government buildings.

Vieira could not immediately be reached for comment.

Details of the charges levelled against the pair weren't immediately clear.

In the arrest warrant, Moraes cited their failure to ensure proper security forces were in place.

He also cited their authorisation of the entrance into the city of more than 100 buses with Bolsonaro supporters on board, and their failure to close down a camp at which the former president's loyalists had been gathering for months.

"In such a sensitive moment for Brazilian democracy, in which anti-democratic protests are occurring all day long, with the occupation of military buildings across the country, and in Brasilia, one cannot use the excuse of ignorance or incompetence," Moraes said in the arrest order, previously disclosed to Reuters by a person familiar with the matter.

A Reuters witness spotted police at the Torres family residence in an upscale Brasilia neighbourhood, where a resident said they left carrying bags.

Across town, police set about questioning more than 1000 protesters after they were detained as troops dismantled their camp opposite the army's headquarters.

Protesters at the camp had called for a military coup to overturn the October election in which leftist President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva narrowly defeated Bolsonaro.

Moraes, who is running investigations of the "anti-democratic" demonstrations, vowed in a speech on Tuesday to combat the "terrorists" calling for a coup.

The violence stunned Lula's government, which has been in office for barely a week, and could delay economic policy announcements planned for this week by an administration eager to show results.

On Monday night, Lula, who took office on January 1, met with the head of the Supreme Court, congressional leaders and state governors in a show of national unity to condemn the riots.

Lula accused Bolsonaro's supporters of trying to overthrow democracy and questioned why the army had not discouraged calls for a military coup.

Bolsonaro, who flew to Florida 48 hours before his term ended, was released from an Orlando hospital where he had been admitted on Monday and was seen re-entering a residence late on Tuesday where he has been staying for most of his Florida trip.

It was not immediately clear whether Bolsonaro had met with Torres while in Florida.

Bolsonaro, 67, told CNN Brasil he might cut short his stay there due to his medical issues, returning to Brazil before the end of the month.