PARACAS, PERU —
A Peruvian prosecutor asked a judge to jail executives of three local construction companies that had previously partnered with Brazilian builder Odebrecht, which has admitted to paying bribes in the country, chief prosecutor Pablo Sanchez said on Friday.
Prosecutors started investigating the five executives of Grana y Montero, JJC Contratistas Generales and Ingenieros Civiles y Contratistas Generales (ICCGSA) earlier this week. The five are accused of paying bribes to win a highway construction contract in southern Peru along with Odebrecht.
Peru has aggressively investigated bribery allegations linked to scandal-plagued Odebrecht and former President Ollanta Humala was jailed earlier this year following accusations he took illegal campaign donations from the firm.
Prosecutor Hamilton Castro made the jail request this morning, Sanchez told reporters at a business conference in Paracas, south of Lima.
ICCGSA said in a statement none of its shareholders or employees had knowledge of the alleged acts of corruption and said it was willing to collaborate with investigators. Grana y Montero and JJC Contratistas Generales did not immediately respond to request for comment.
Last month, prosecutors said they were investigating Grana for alleged involvement in bribes that Odebrecht has admitted paying to local officials in exchange for lucrative contracts.
Grana's shares in Lima have fallen more than 60 percent this year on concerns over the probe. Shares were down 5.6 percent at 1.84 soles ($0.5690) per share on Friday afternoon.
The company has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and said an internal probe turned up no evidence that its employees knew about or took part in the bribes. It has said it is willing to cooperate with the investigation.
($1 = 3.2337 soles)