After several months of negotiations, an agreement was finally signed on 15 February between the Prosecutor’s Office (Ministerio Público) and the Brazilian company Odebrecht to provide crucial information with respect to corruption in Peru.
The 800-page document details exactly what the witnesses will contribute and what they and Odebrecht will obtain in exchange, mainly the right to continue trading in Peru and freedom from prosecution for its main executives. Odebrecht will pay 610 million soles (some US$200 million) in reparations for the bribes it paid to win contracts over the last 20 years.
The four cases in which the collaboration has been agreed include: the Lima Metro, during Alan Garcia’s tenure of office (2006-11); the Interoceanic Highway under Alejandro Toledo (2001-06); the Callao expressway under regional presidency of Felix Moreno; and Cuzco ring-road, overseen by Regional President Jorge Acurio (both during the presidency of Ollanta Humala (2011-16)). Both Moreno and Acurio are on remand and Humala has served time in prison but is now out but barred from traveling. Alan García is also prevented from leaving the country and there are proceedings under way to extradite Toledo from the United States.
There has been no shortage of opposition to an agreement that could further implicate three past presidents and two regional presidents. But the agreement is now in place and new information is expected to flow into the Ministerio Público in the coming weeks.
Judge Richard Concepcion Carhuancho has now been taken off the investigation into Keiko Fujimori. But here too new information may come to light. If further evidence of wrongdoing emerges, Odebrecht will have to pay more in reparations to the Peruvian state.