Brazil's top judge approves Odebrecht plea deal
The decision by Brazil Supreme Court President Carmen Lucia Rocha could lead to new revelations about the involvement of politicians and business leaders in the Lava Jato corruption scandal
The president of Brazil’s Supreme
Court, Carmen Lucia Rocha, has accepted plea deals from 77
Odebrecht executives, a move that could lead to new revelations
about the involvement of politicians and business leaders in
the Lava Jato corruption scandal.
The details of the plea agreements have been the
focus of intense interest in Brazil, where some testimony has
been leaked to the press in recent weeks. One of the widely
reported leaks involves alleged statements from former CEO
Marcelo Odebrecht about a kickback and bribe scheme with
lawmakers and other political leaders.
Some of the testimony is also believed to
implicate allies of Brazilian President Michel Temer,
threatening to rattle the government at a time when it is
struggling to reignite the economy and push through a series of
The testimony will be sent to a prosecutor and is
expected to remain sealed, the court said in a statement.
On Monday, Temer said Rocha had acted "correctly"
by accepting the plea deals. He did not comment publicly on any
testimony in the agreements.
The court’s announcement came on the
same day that the one-time billionaire Eike Batista turned
himself into Brazilian authorities in connection to the
sweeping corruption probe at the state-owned energy company
Batista arrived in Rio de Janeiro on Monday on a
flight from New York and was immediately taken into custody.
Batista had been considered a fugitive for several days, after
he traveled to the US last week before police raided his home
"I have to show what is what," Batista was quoted
as saying by Brazilian television network Globo before he got
off the plane. "It’s time to clarify things."
Police accuse Batista of paying $16m in bribes to
the former governor of Rio state, Sergio Cabral, in exchange
for his backing of some of Batista’s businesses.
Cabral, who served as governor from 2007 to 2014, has denied
the charges. He is being held in jail as part of a separate