Rodrigo Durán, the former attorney for Norberto Odebrecht SA, it is being reported, in major Latin American media, has alleged that Juan Carlos Varela, the president of the Republic of Panama, received a bribe of one million Euros, from his client. While this allegation is extremely damaging, there are 40-odd other Odebrecht bribe recipients named from Panama, including the former president, Ricardo Martinelli, who is now fighting extradition to Panama, from Miami.
The report alleges that Varela received the money in an account at HSBC in Hong Kong; some Panamanian sources are stating that the government in Panama City unsuccessfully sought to have Varela kept out of the Odebrecht charges.
Chronicles of Monte Friesner - Financial Crime Analyst
Contributed by Kenneth Rijock - Financial Crime Consultant