The prosecutor’s office also linked 16 people to the corruption scandal

The Attorney General, Francisco Barbosa, has announced that 16 people have been linked to the Odebrecht scandal in Colombia. With this decision, the head of the intelligence agency promised that 60 people will already face criminal charges in the country for receiving and handling bribes sent from Brazil to benefit the multinational construction company, along with infrastructure contracts.

This announcement was made after a meeting with them A Full Bench of the Supreme Court, In it he gave an assessment of the measures taken against corruption. “Tomorrow, there will be 16 new defendants, and with that we will already reach 33 charges,” Barbosa revealed.

– Photo: Daniel Queen

Likewise, he warned that the Odebrecht case in Colombia was almost closed in 2019. However, after several investigations, they were linked to others who had knowledge, involvement and responsibility in this corrupt network, for which several former congressmen, businessmen, contractors, individuals and even a former deputy minister have already been convicted.

“I dedicated myself to the country in that struggle I am going to leave these eleven months against corruption and fulfill that promise”, said the Attorney General after the meeting held at the Palace of Justice in the center of Bogotá.

In December 2016, Marcelo Odebrecht, the head of the multinational company, admitted to US judicial authorities that he used bribes in all Latin American countries to directly obtain public works contracts. In the case of Colombia, it was noted that eleven million dollars were transferred to obtain contracts related to the Ruta del Sol II project.

Odebrecht’s former president, Marcelo Odebrecht, has pledged to cooperate with justice in the corruption scandal. – Photo: Leon Dario Pelez
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In order to achieve their goals, large sums of money were sent to high-ranking officials handling the deal Bidding method Odebrecht benefits from this. In the first block, Gabriel García Morales, former head of the National Concessions Company (Inco) and former deputy minister of transport, will give the provisional union $4.5 million for the Ruta del Sol II contract. The largest shareholder is Odebrecht.

‘Ñoño’ is one of the main witnesses of the Odebrecht scandal in Colombia. – Photo: William Torres

Subsequently, former Senator Otto Nicolas Bula Bula was attached, who was considered by the Attorney General’s office to have “moved” 6.5 million dollars in Congress, including the contract for the Okana job -under the additional count of Camarra. For this, he used his influence in the Senate so that the necessary bidding process would not take place.

Both Garcia Morales and Bula Signed a preliminary agreement with the public prosecutor’s office In it they admitted their participation in these corrupt practices and promised to cooperate with the authorities within other criminal and disciplinary proceedings. The former deputy minister was sentenced to 5 years in prison and the former senator was sentenced to 5 years and four months in prison.

Otto Pula
Odebrecht Basil Company Odebrecht scandal Bogota December 19, 2017 Photo by Daniel Reina Romero from Semana magazine Otto Pula Odebrecht case of bribery – Photo: Daniel Queen

Through their statements, they were linked to other protagonists, including the powerful U Party senator Bernardo Miguel Elias Vidal, known as El Ñoño, who was captured in August 2017. Although at one point he pleaded not guilty, an unprecedented move by the Supreme Court, he accepted full responsibility for the events.

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In 2018, he was sentenced to six years and eight months in prison. The former senator from La Yu Party expressed his willingness to continue to cooperate with judicial authorities to clarify this truth about corruption.

In August 2021, Elias received his second sentence: eight years and four months in prison, when he had already turned on the fan and contacted other people related to bribes sent by Otbrecht to benefit from highway contracts in the country, including former President Juan Manuel Santos.

On this occasion, he was convicted of aggravated conspiracy and money laundering, to which he also pleaded guilty. On that occasion, he was fined 13,600 million pesos.

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