Brazil’s state-owned energy company Petrobras announced it has received 425 million reais (U.S. $112.3 million) from leniency agreements and repatriations carried out by the country’s Federal Prosecutor’s Office. This brings the total amount of funds returned to the company as a result of cooperation, leniency agreements, and repatriation to more than 4 billion reais (U.S. $1.06 billion), the company said.
According to Petrobras, such returns include 313 million reais (U.S. $82.7 million) related to the payment of the first installment of a Technip and Flexibras leniency agreement with the Federal Prosecutor’s Office, the Government Accountability Office, and the Federal Attorney General; 45 million reais (U.S. $11.9 million) due to an installment of the leniency agreement between Camargo Correa and the Federal Prosecutor’s Office; and 67 million reais (U.S. $17.7 million) from individuals involved in acts of corruption discovered in “Operation Car Wash.”
Additionally, the Technip-Flexibras agreement will provide payments of 253 million reais (U.S. $66.9 million) in both 2020 and 2021, according to Petrobras.
In September 2018, Petrobras reached a coordinated resolution with U.S. and Brazilian authorities agreeing to pay a combined $853.2 million for playing a role in one of the largest political corruption investigations the world has ever seen. The saga began when it was discovered that some of Brazil’s largest construction and engineering companies received inflated contracts from Petrobras—excess markups that were then used to funnel kickbacks to Petrobras executives and high-ranking politicians.
“Executives at the highest levels of Petrobras—including members of its executive board and board of directors—facilitated the payment of hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes to Brazilian politicians and political parties and then cooked the books to conceal the bribe payments from investors and regulators,” said U.S. Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski.
Still, Petrobras holds it is a victim of the corrupt acts, rather than a perpetrator.