In Lima, Peru, the Peruvian Superior Court on organized crime has authorized the arrest of former president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski last Wednesday, April 10. This is connected to an investigation of Kuczynski’s involvement in a corruption scandal involving Brazilian construction titan Odebrecht that subsequently led to his forced resignation from office last year.
The Superior Court also authorized the two-day-long search of the 80-year-old former president’s house in the suburb of San Isidro for any documentary evidence related to the case. Shortly afterwards, he was arrested. After a thorough medical check, he was brought to the police HQ in downtown Lima. For 10 days, the former president would be held for a period of 10 days for the crime of money laundering committed in the Odebrecht case.
Also known as PPK, Kuczynski claimed that the charges against him were motivated by political persecution towards him. Meanwhile, Odebrcht has recognized its place as the biggest graft scandal in the Latin American continent, which resulted in the dispensation of over $750 million bribes across twelve countries. These questionable acts were done to acquire infrastructure contracts. As a result of the scandal, Kuczynski became the first sitting president of Peru to resign over a scandal of such magnitude.
However, this had affected three previous presidents, such as Alan Garcia, and Ollanta Humala, and Alejandro Toledo, the latter facing extradition from the US for a $20 million Odebrecht bribe. The bribes made by the company have been paid to Peruvian officials since the year 2004, admitted Odebrecht. In spite of claiming to be persecuted, however, Kuczynski said that he is willing to fully cooperate with the prosecution in the investigation. The scandal also happened to involve opposition leader Keiko Fujimori, who is currently serving a 36-month preventive sentence while the ongoing investigations into the finances of her party continue.