December 17, 2017

Brothers accused of receving US$22 million

Friday, February 17, 2017

Panama seeking arrest of sons of former president Ricardo Martinelli

PANAMA CITY — Prosecutors in Panama are seeking international help in detaining two sons of former President Ricardo Martinelli in relation to an alleged scheme to launder bribes from Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht.

Anti-corruption prosecutor Tania Sterling claims Ricardo Alberto and Luis Enrique Martinelli helped deposit part of US$22 million that Odebrecht allegedly paid in bribes to win contracts in Panama and asked Interpol for a red warrant against them.

Martinelli governed in 2009-2014 and lives in Miami. The ex-president wrote in his Twitter account Sunday that a “show” would be mounted against his sons to “distract attention.”

Separately, Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela has released a list of donors to his 2014 presidential campaign and invited his rivals to do the same after a former associate accused him of being on Odebrecht’s payroll. Varela did recognise that he received donations from a public contractors but denied that it was legally problematic.

Panama has vetoed any participation by Odebrecht in future bids for public works and it has been investigating the allegations of bribes in the awarding of contracts worth US$9 billion.

Herald with AP

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