Brazil ‘Carwash’ Probe Yields Largest-Ever Corruption Penalty

Odebrecht SA, Latin America’s biggest construction company, and an affiliate agreed to pay more than $3.5 billion to resolve bribery allegations involving Brazil’s state-run oil company, the largest corruption penalty ever levied by global authorities.

Odebrecht pleaded guilty in Brooklyn, New York, on Wednesday to conspiring to pay bribes in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. An Odebrecht affiliate, the petrochemicals maker Braskem SA, also pleaded guilty. The two admitted to paying officials of Petroleo Brasileiro SA, the Brazilian oil giant known as Petrobras, to win contracts.

Odebrecht paid bribes of U$ 778 million in 11 countries which rendered over U$ 5 billion in public works for the construction company: Panama, Argentina, Angola, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Guatemala and Mozambique.

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