Dominican Republic mulls plea bargaining in US$92.0M Odebrecht bribe
Santo Domingo.- A National District judge willrule Wednesday on the validity of the prosecution’s plea bargaining agreement withOdebrecht, which pledged to pay the State US$184.0 million in damages foradmittedly bribing government officials to secure public works contracts.
Instruction courts coordinating judge JoséAlejandro Vargas is expected to read the sentence at the Ciudad Nueva courthouse.
Anticorruption prosecutor Laura Guerrero had filedthe request to authorize the agreement reachedin court with Odebrecht attorney Robert Valdez on February 10.
It emerged that the judge will also rule on theprosecution’s request to declare the Odebrecht case complex, with 16 people questionedthus far, including Odebrecht country manager Marcelo Hofke and local representativeÁngel Rondón, who admitted receiving US$92 million, but as payment for hisservices.
President Danilo Medina said Monday that the decisionover the plea bargaining agreement won’t halt the investigation.
The agreement includes US$184 million, which theBrazilian company would disburse 30 million now, and the rest by 2025.
Odebrecht’s guilty plea for bribery in NewYork unleashed he investigation in the country, as the result of a far-reachinginvestigation into corruption in Brazil, and has also agreed to pay more than US$3.5billion fines.