You almost have to hand it to Odebrecht, the Brazilian construction giant that did to bribery what Henry Ford did to car-making.
In the wake of the sprawling, multi-billion dollar settlement reached with prosecutors from several countries, the stories coming out about the way the company managed its kickback empire are staggering. Take it away, Wall Street Journal,
Odebrecht sought and utilized smaller banks in countries with strict secrecy laws to help carry out the scheme, paying extra fees, higher rates and a percentage of each illicit transaction to certain executives to ensure their cooperation, according to court documents filed by the Justice Department and made public Wednesday.
In one case in Antigua, Odebrecht bought the local branch of a bank, allowing other members of the conspiracy, including politicians from multiple countries, to open accounts and receive transfers without arousing attention.
Odebrecht also created a stand-alone internal division that “effectively functioned as a bribe department,” the documents said. Dubbed the “Division of Structured Operations,” the department used an off-the-book communications system that allowed Odebrecht employees to communicate with each other and with outside financial operators and co-conspirators through secure emails and instant messages using code names and passwords, the documents said.
That’s all documented, negro-sobre-blanco in the plea agreement.
So it’ll be dead easy for Venezuelan authorities to investigate.
Un tiro al suelo, ¿right?
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