Monday, January 18, 2021

Former Peruvian president Humala faces probe over Odebrecht corruption scheme

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The Peruvian Prosecutor General’s Office has launched a preliminary investigation into former President Ollanta Humala over his alleged involvement in the multi-million corruption scheme by Brazilian construction company Odebrecht, media reported on Tuesday.

According to Peru’s El Comercio newspaper, the former leader is alleged to have helped Odebrecht secure state contracts for the construction of the South Peruvian gas pipeline, while heading an executive authority together with his wife, Nadine Heredia, during his presidency from 2011 to 2016.

The inquiry will last for eight months, the newspaper reported, adding that three former ministers are also under investigation over charges of aggravated conspiracy.

In 2017, a Peruvian court sentenced Humala and his wife to preliminary imprisonment for 18 months.

The ex-leader was suspected of receiving bribes from construction companies Odebrecht and OAS, which were used for financing the election campaigns of the Peruvian Nationalist Party in 2006 and 2011, while Heredia of being involved in money laundering via funds, which sponsored Humala’s election campaign. The Constitutional Court of Peru ordered the release of Humala and his wife in April 2018.

The infamous Odebrecht construction company has bribed politicians across Latin America to secure lucrative contracts. An investigation into Odebrecht corruption schemes launched in 2016 has already led to the dismissal of a number of high-ranking officials across the continent.

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