Brazil: High politician admits bribery by leading brewery

Sérgio Cabral, former governor of the state of Rio de Janeiro confessed on Tuesday that during his term he received a bribe from Grupo Petrópolis, the third largest brewing group in Brazil which is headquartered in Petrópolis, 68 kilometres (42 mi) northeast of Rio de Janeiro. Cabral did not say how much he received monthly, but said the statement of his financial advisor Carlos Miranda was true. Miranda said at the end of last year that Grupo Petrópolis paid an allowance of BRL 500,000 (USD 127,000) to Cabral's group, in order to obtain tax breaks

When confronted with the allegations, Grupo Petrópolis said that it did not obtain any fiscal or financial benefit during the term of office of Sérgio Cabral. "The company has always acted in accordance with the law and its relations with the State of Rio de Janeiro were based on the criteria of job creation for the region, reason why it never needed any subterfuge to act in the State," the group said.

Grupo Petrópolis is also said to have donated BRL 40 million (about USD 15 million) to the presidential campaign of the ticket Dilma Rousseff-Michel Temer in 2014. A former executive of Odebrecht, Latin America’s major construction conglomerate, said at that time on court that his firm used Itaipava brewery (Petrópolis) as an intermediary for the donation because it did not want to be listed as the biggest donor to politicians (, 5.5.2017).

Petrópolis was founded in 1994. Four years later, in 1998, Brazilian business man Walter Faria bought the business and transformed it into one of Brazil's leading and still privately owned beer-and-beverage companies. It operates six plants across the country (Boituva, Petrópolis, Teresópolis, Rondonópolis, Alagoinhas and Itapissuma) and and produces a range of beers and other beverages under the brand names Itaipava (Brazil's second largest selling brand), Crystal, Lokal, Black Princess and others. In addition Grupo Petrópolis produces Nordka vodka, energy drinks under the TNT and Magneto brands and Petra bottled water.

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