Former Planning Minister in Argentina Charged with Corruption

Julio De Vido (left) and Teresa Parodi (right). / "Parodi y De Vido en rueda de prensa en el Centro Cultural Kirchner" / Ministerio de Cultura de la Nación Argentina / May 22, 2015 / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

A former government minister in Argentina was charged last week for corrupt practices while in office. Julio De Vido was the Minister of Planning and Public Investment from 2003 to 2015 during the administrations of President Néstor Kirchner and his successor President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.

De Vido is accused of illegally favoring the Brazilian construction conglomerate, Odebrecht, for multimillion dollar construction contracts.

Odebrecht is at the center of a massive corruption scandal related to Operation Car Wash in Brazil. While starting in Brazil, the scandal grew to encompass most of Latin America and the Caribbean.

Odebrecht officials pled guilty to corruption charges in Brazil, Switzerland, and the United States in late-2016. The company acknowledged that it spent $800 million in bribes to win government contracts in 10 Latin American and Caribbean countries worth more than $3.3 billion.

According to the Associated Press, De Vido turned himself over to authorities last-October after he was stripped of his immunity.

The charges are only the latest in an ongoing anti-corruption effort targeting officials from the previous government. Former President and now Senator Fernández de Kirchner is accused of corruption by some. She was indicted on treason charges last December related to the 1994 bombing in Buenos Aires.

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