LIMA – Brazilian businessman Marcelo Odebrecht told prosecutors last month that his construction company supported Peruvian politicians, including Keiko Fujimori, Alan Garcia, Alejandro Toledo and Ollanta Humala, IDL-Reporteros said in a report posted on its website.
“We certainly supported all of them. Toledo, Alan Garcia, Humala, and Keiko,” Odebrecht told prosecutors during a meeting on Nov. 9 in the Brazilian city of Curitiba.
IDL-Reporteros, an investigative reporting group, posted audio from the meeting and published a transcript of Odebrecht’s statements.
“Our intention was to support. We supported many opposition candidates in some way even though we knew they weren’t going to be elected. Because the opposition can also create problems. One way to create a network is through support,” the construction magnate told investigators.
Alan Garcia, who left the presidency in 2011, denied in a Twitter post that he ever received anything from Odebrecht.
“They sold themselves, not me,” Garcia said, adding that “everything else is smoke.”
Keiko Fujimori, for his part, said Odebrecht did not have any solid information about her case.
“In my case, Marcelo Odebrecht is speculating, showing intentions but no facts. He doesn’t know me, nor did he give me money,” Fujimori said in a Twitter post.
Keiko, the eldest daughter of recently pardoned former President Alberto Fujimori, said she did not take any money from Odebrecht.
On Thursday, President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski and Keiko Fujimori, his main political rival, were questioned by prosecutors investigating the Odebrecht corruption scandal, which has dominated Peruvian politics in 2017.
Odebrecht has acknowledged paying $788 million in bribes to obtain government contracts in a dozen countries.
The Odebrecht scandal has implicated Peru’s major political parties and every presidential administration going back to 2005.
Odebrecht executives said that as much as $20 million was paid to Toledo – now living abroad – and significant sums also went to the government of his successor, Alan Garcia.
Ollanta Humala, who was president from 2011-2016, is behind bars along with his wife pending trial on charges they accepted illegal political contributions from Odebrecht.
Against the backdrop of the ongoing Odebrecht investigation, Kuczynski stunned Peru on Christmas Eve announcing a pardon for Alberto Fujimori, who was serving a 25-year prison sentence for massacres committed by security forces during his 1990-2000 rule.