By Lise Alves, Senior Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – The top prosecutor in Brazil, Rodrigo Janot, announced on Monday that an investigation into the testimony of JBS executives is underway. If it is found that they omitted vital information to the Lava Jato (Car Wash) corruption investigation their plea-bargaining agreement could be annulled, said the official.
“I have determined today the opening of an investigation to investigate indications of omission of information about criminal practices in the negotiation process of the signing of the agreement in the JBS case. Audios with vital content, I would say very vital, were obtained by the Federal Public Ministry last week,” Janot said in a press conference on Monday in Brasilia.
According to Janot the latest audio obtained discloses a bank account in Paraguay owned by the company which had not been revealed to prosecutors in the plea-bargaining agreement, as well as an arrangement with a former prosecutor that could be construed as a ‘crime and an act of administrative impropriety’.
The prosecutor said the audio implicates three of the company’s seven executives who closed the deal, former CEO Joesley Batista, JBS director Ricardo Saud and company lawyer Francisco de Assis e Silva.
“It [annulment] will be a demonstration that you cannot deceive the Public Ministry and the Judiciary,” he said.
For Janot although prosecutors may annul the terms of the plea-bargaining agreement with the three executives, the original evidence provided by them may still be used. “The possible termination of the agreement does not invalidate the evidence so far offered,” stressed the prosecutor.
According to news website G1 Joesley Batista informed the federal police that he will not attend the testimony scheduled for Tuesday (Sept 5th) in Brasilia to talk about the investigations.