A former Odebrecht executive tells prosecutors he gave money to current Peruvian president, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski during his 2011 presidential election campaign expecting contracts in return.
Jorge Barata, a former Odebrecht director in Peru, allegedly admitted to Peruvian state prosecutor, Rafael Vela that he gave campaign money to Kuczynski as a candidate on part of his company in order to gain government construction contracts.
The current president denied today over Twitter Barata’s allegations saying he didn’t receive any Odebrecht kickbacks in 2011 and he didn’t administer finances for his first unsuccessful bid as head of state.
Last December Kuczynski insisted he "never received a bribe" as Congress was debating his impeached for "moral incapacity" suspecting he had, indeed, accepted approximately US$800,000 800,000 in Odebrecht bribes.
During the line of questioning it was also revealed that Barata also gave bribe money to Keiko Fujimori in 2011, a claim the current senator denies.
Keiko is the daughter of former president of Alberto Fujimori who Kuczynski recently pardoned from a 25-year sentence for crimes against humanity. It’s widely suspected that Fujimori’s son, Kenji, also a legislator, concocted a congressional coalition to not oust the president in December in exchange for his father's pardon.
As president, Kuczynski has immunity from prosecution and can only be formally investigated once he leaves office. His term is up in 2021.
Vela tells local media today that Barata’s confession corroborates with that of other state prosecutors investigating former Peruvian presidents, Ollanta Humala and Alejandro Toledo.
"Mr. Barata’s testimony corroborates completely with other evidence (investigators have against the two former presidents). … We’re completely satisfied. Mr. Barata has exhaustively, rigorously and with detail and precision, given his declaration," said Vela to the press.
Prosecutors say that Humala, now in pre-trial detention, laundered money for Odebrecht and that Toledo, under whom Kuczynski served as finance minister, is accused of taking a $20 million bribe from Odebrecht.