Gol Linhas Aéreas will pay more than US$41 million (R$215 million) in an agreement with the US Department of Justice so that bribes paid by the company are not investigated by authorities in the country. Brazil will get its share of the money.
The information was released this Thursday (15) by the US Department of Justice (the equivalent body of the Ministry of Justice in the country).
According to the text, the company was charged with conspiracy to violate anti-bribery laws.
Kenneth Polite Jr., a US lawyer, said, “Gol paid bribes of millions of dollars to foreign officials (i.e. Brazilian officials) in Brazil in exchange for laws that benefited the airline.”
According to Polite Jr., the company entered into fraudulent contracts with third-party vendors to make and hide money to pay these kickbacks and then placed false information in its own records so that the action would not be discovered.
The Americans coordinated the agreement which included the following American and Brazilian bodies:
- US Department of Justice;
- US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC, which oversees securities markets; equivalent body to the Securities and Exchange Commission in Brazil);
- Comptroller General of the Federation of Brazil;
- Attorney General of the Brazilian Federation.
The Comptroller General (CGU) of the Union and the Attorney General’s Office (AGU) confirmed that the Indian government would pay for the irregularities: it is $14.3 million to Brazil. A CGU note cited violation of two laws relating to administrative irregularities.
The airline also confirmed the closure of the agreement to end the investigation into “payments of approximately US$3.8 million made through GOL in 2012 and 2013 to politically exposed individuals, including officials of the Brazilian government”.
Gol says that “an external and independent investigation contracted by the company was completed in April 2017 and none of the existing employees, representatives or members of the board of directors or members of the company’s management were aware of any illegal motives”. any illegal profit to the company arising out of the identified transaction, or the investigated transaction”.