March 8, 2016 / 3:02 PM / 4 years ago

Brazil's Marcelo Odebrecht gets 19-yr sentence in corruption scandal

SAO PAULO, March 8 (Reuters) - Marcelo Odebrecht, former chief executive of Latin America’s largest engineering and construction conglomerate Odebrecht SA, received a 19-year sentence from federal court on convictions for bribery, money laundering and organized crime related to Brazil’s massive corruption scandal, a court statement said on Tuesday.

Marcelo Odebrecht is the highest profile executive to be convicted in the nearly two-year-old “Operation Car Wash” investigations and is considered the central private sector figure in what federal police and prosecutors have called a criminal organization.

The scandal revolves around a complex overbilling and political kickback scheme in the state-run oil company Petrobras SA that is threatening to bring down the government of President Dilma Rousseff. (Reporting by Pedro Fonseca and Reese Ewing Editing by W Simon)

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