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18 arrested over Petrobras corruption case in Brazil

IANS 15 Nov 2014, 11:04:53 AM IST

Brasilia: Brazilian authorities have arrested at least 18 people linked with state oil giant Petrobras corruption case.

The investigation named "Operation Car Wash" has led to arrests in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais, Pernambuco and Parana, Xinhua reported.

A total of 49 search and seizure warrants have been issued.

The arrests made Friday, include high-level executives such as Renato Duque, former director of engineering and services at Petrobras, who will be charged with corruption, fraud and money laundering, police said.

The Petrobras scam, which involves embezzlement of 10 billion Brazilian reals ($3.84 billion), became a major issue of concern during the presidential runoff in October.

Brazilian media had reported days before the election that President Dilma Rousseff, who was seeking re-election, personally knew about the scam.

Rousseff has denied all allegations.