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Petrobras says ‘exclusive report’ of $1.6 billion FCPA settlement is false

Brazil’s Petrobras said Wednesday it isn’t negotiating a settlement with U.S. authorities tied to alleged corruption following a report that claimed the state-owned company was in talks to pay a record FCPA fine.

In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Petrobras said “there are no ongoing negotiations regarding the eventual payment of a fine for the winding up of civil and criminal investigations in the United States regarding the violation of the anti-corruption legislation.”

The company added that there has been no decision made by any U.S. authority regarding “the merit of such an investigation or the eventual amounts involved.”

The disclosure came in response to an exclusive report from Reuters Tuesday that the oil and gas giant was in discussions to pay a record-breaking $1.6 billion to settle FCPA offenses.

The biggest FCPA enforcement action to date is Siemens’ 2008 settlement for $800 million.

Last November, Petrobras received a subpoena from the SEC for unspecified documents.

As is customary, neither the DOJ nor the SEC have confirmed that they are investigating the company.

Petrobras has been embroiled in an ongoing corruption probe in Brazil that has landed several executives in jail and forced CEO Maria das Gracas Silva Foster to resign in January.

Former Petrobras executive Paulo Roberto Costa alleged in September last year that executives at several companies were inflating the price of Petrobras contracts and skimming the excess funds.

Some of the funds were paid to Brazilian politicians and political parties, Costa claimed.

Earlier this week, former Petrobras international chief Nestor Cerveró was sentenced to 12 years and three months in prison for money laundering and corruption charges tied to a bribe he allegedly paid lower house speaker Eduardo Cunha.


Nicolas Torres is a reporter for Petro Global News, where a version of this post first appeared.

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