In the NYT, Simon Romero writes that former senator Delcídio do Amaral is singing like a bird,
Insider’s Account of How Graft Fed Brazil’s Political Crisis (emphasis added)
The senator’s accounts of colossal bribes, back-room oil deals and desperate cover-ups — pieced together from interviews, leaked intercepts of telephone conversations and court filings — offer a rare glimpse into how a leftist party that rose to power vowing to stamp out the corruption of a privileged political elite ended up embracing its predecessors’ practices. His testimony has accelerated Brazil’s political crisis, in which fearful rulers are masterminding power grabs, secretly recording each other and preparing for the day that they, too, might find themselves on the wrong side of an early-morning police raid.
Even the judge who at first was heralded for fearlessly pursuing the powerful now stands accused of breaking the law for releasing evidence from the investigation.
Corruption second to none,
The upheaval began two years ago when prosecutors discovered a scheme inside the national oil company, Petrobras: Contractors had paid nearly $3 billion in bribes to executives who in turn channeled money into the campaigns of parties in Brazil’s governing coalition. Nearly 40 politicians, business moguls and black-market money dealers have been jailed since, and the list is expected to grow, with prosecutors investigating suspects including the leaders of both chambers of Congress.
Scholars say the corruption scandal ranks among the most far-reaching in the developing world, likening it to an earthquake hitting the nation’s privileged elite.
Not just the privileged elite. Corruption in that scale ruins the whole country.
Read the full article.