Odebrecht, the Brazilian construction company, has become synonymous with corruption, not just in Brazil but now—with revelations of kickbacks in Peru and Venezuela—throughout the company’s global dealings. (Though, for anyone following the company’s activities in Venezuela, the recent revelations were no surprise.) Since the eruption of the Lava Jato scandal, the construction giant has been banned from seeking government contracts in Brazil and in December 2016 was fined $3.5 billion by the U.S. government for violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)—the largest corruption fine ever. Brazilian authorities sentenced former CEO Marcelo Odebrecht to 19 years in prison last March for kickbacks; now it looks like, in return for a lighter sentence, he’s going to reveal who else the company ensnared in its sleaze. The fall-out from Odebrecht’s trail of corruption in the other countries remains to be seen—though in Venezuela it’s likely that, once the lid is truly lifted, Odebrecht’s practices in Caracas may look like pretty small stuff in comparison to other goings on.
Cartoon credit: Arcadio Esquivel, Costa Rica, CagleCartoons.com