Prosecutors in Brazil’s “Car Wash” corruption investigation charged former President Luiz da Silva with money laundering on Monday, less than 12 months after the country’s top court ordered him released from custody while he appealed another case.
Prosecutors said the ex-leader of Brazil (2003-2010) received bribes from construction company Odebrecht, these bribes were allegedly disguised as donations the former leader’s Instituto Lula. The funds were illegally received in Instituto Lula accounts between December 2013 and March 2014 in exchange for contracts with Brazil’s state oil company, Petrobras.
Lawyers for the ex-president expressed surprise at the charges stating that prosecutors have no evidence to back them. Da Silva has maintained his innocence and accused prosecutors in the “Car Wash” probe of persecuting him.
Prosecutors also charged his first finance minister and the head of the Instituto Lula, Paulo Okamotto.