Odebrecht strikes leniency deal in Petrobras scandal

Odebrecht, one of the largest construction firms implicated by Operação Lava Jato in the Petrobras corruption scandal, reached a leniency deal (essentially a plea bargain) with prosecutors on 1 December 2016 (Folha, Valor). The accompanying fine is ~US$1.9 billion, which Odebrecht will pay in annual increments over twenty years. Inclusive of interest payments over this period, the actual amount paid by the company will surpass US$2.4 billion. The company will pay the majority of the fine to the Brazilian Ministry of Justice, with smaller portions going to the Ministry's American and Swiss counterparts. Operação Lava Jato expected to begin reaching plea deals with almost 80 executives and former employees of Odebrecht, including former President Marcelo Odebrecht, as soon as 1 December 2016 in Brasília. Supreme Court Minister Teori Zavascki, who oversees the Lava Jato operation for the Court, must approve these plea bargains before they may be finalized, meaning that attorneys must find the testimonies or evidence presented by the defendants to be valuable in the case.