HomeNewsBriefBrazil to Investigate Olympic Contracts Worth $10 Bn
BRIEF

Brazil to Investigate Olympic Contracts Worth $10 Bn

BRAZIL / 27 NOV 2015 BY DAVID GAGNE EN

Police in Brazil will begin investigating bribery and price-fixing in relation to construction contracts issued for the 2016 Olympics, an illustration of the broad set of challenges facing security officials during international sporting events. 

Federal Police Chief Igor Romario told Reuters that some of the engineering firms involved in the multi-billion dollar corruption scandal at state-owned oil company Petrobras “very probably” used bribery in an attempt to secure over $10 billion worth of construction contracts for the 2016 Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro.

According to Reuters, just five companies are building most of the new stadiums and infrastructure needed for the Olympics. Executives from four of these five companies have either been jailed or sentenced on corruption charges stemming from the Petrobras investigation.

“In every situation where there has been an investigation into contracts with these companies, this model of corruption was repeated,” said Romario, who is a lead investigator into the Petrobras scandal. “”It’s possible that it was repeated in the projects for the 2016 Olympics.”

Romario added that there is not yet any evidence of wrongdoing, and that the investigation remains focused on corruption at Petrobras. The two-year probe into the state-owned oil giant has implicated over 100 people, including high-level political figures and Petrobras executives. Billionaire and senator Andre Esteves was the most recent Brazilian elite to be ensnared by the scandal, after he was arrested at his home in Rio de Janeiro on November 25. 

InSight Crime Analysis

The planned probe into Olympic contracts is a reminder of just how many opportunities criminals have to cash in during large, international sporting events. The huge amount of money involved and large number of tourists expected for the Olympics present authorities with unique security challenges, which are only compounded in cities with a strong organized crime presence such as Rio de Janeiro.

SEE ALSO: Brazil News and Profiles

Brazilian authorities are unlikely to be caught completely off-guard, however, considering the country also hosted the 2014 World Cup. Officials are planning on deploying 85,000 police officers to the Games, or nearly twice the size of the police force used in London during the 2012 Olympics.

One public security threat that can’t be ruled out at events such as the Olympics is terrorism. Security officials recently stated that “terror is the number one priority” for the Olympics, as it was during the World Cup and the Pope’s visit to Brazil in 2013.

Compartir icon icon icon

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America's largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ELITES AND CRIME / 29 MAR 2016

Arrested former Guatemala President Otto Pérez Molina has professed his innocence in the corruption scandal that cost him the presidency,…

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 16 JUN 2014

El Salvador's street gangs have been ambushing police with military-grade weapons, leading to fears the gangs, for the first time,…

ELITES AND CRIME / 29 AUG 2014

Officials in Peru have said the two companies whose shipments of coal were found to contain tons of cocaine earlier…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – Ten Years of Investigating Organized Crime in the Americas

FEATURED / 2 NOV 2020

In early 2009, Steven Dudley was in Medellín, Colombia. His assignment: speak to a jailed paramilitary leader in the Itagui prison, just south of the city. Following his interview inside…