JAS deal: Lula accused of corruption

The federal prosecution authority in Brazil has accused ex-president Liz Ignácio “Lula” da Silva of a number of crimes including influence trafficking, money laundering and organised crime between 2013 and 2015. The authority claims the improprieties led the Brazilian government to choose to purchase 36 JAS Gripen planes from Saab.

Accusations have also been made against Lula’s son, Luiz Cláudio Lula da Silva, and the Brazilian lobbyist Mauro Marcondes and engineer Cristina Mautoni who together own the lobbying firm M&M. Former president Lula is said to have influenced the government to the advantage of companies including Saab.

Brazilian newspaper O Globo reports that the prosecutors wrote that the lobbyists received over 2.5 million reais (around 7.5 million kronor), which was then transferred to Lula da Silva. They claim that Saab gave 1.84 million euros to M&M and write there is a great deal of evidence to support the accusation. “There is an intensive exchange of emails between employees of M&M and Lula Institute which aim to facilitate a meeting between Lula and the future Swedish prime minister Stefan Löfven.”

Saab denies participating in improprieties.

Finance Minister considers action

Swedish’s Ministry of Finance has called on Volkswagen to say how many emission-rigged cars have been classed as green cars, the reason being that Sweden may have paid out subsidies on false grounds.

Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson says it is too soon to say whether Sweden will claim damages of Volkswagen, but she expects the carmaker to provide more information “as soon as possible”.

Meeting Volkswagen representatives on Wednesday, Environment Minister Åsa Romson has called on the carmaker to inform car owners and the authorities of how the problem is to be resolved.

Meanwhile, the National Anti-Corruption Unit is evaluating whether an investigation into Volkswagen can be carried out under Swedish jurisdiction.