Local law enforcement authorities are investigating the involvement of Antiguans and Barbudans in the Odebrecht scandal, Prime Minister Gaston Browne has confirmed.
He said the Office of the National Drug and Money Laundering Control Policy (ONDCP) is the competent authority carrying out the probe.
Browne said the ONDCP “operates independently of the minister of finance.”
The prime minister also said he had “no difficulty” making the findings of the probe known although he did not indicate the exact scope of the investigation.
Information implicating an Antiguan government official was revealed in a New York court as part of US investigations into a bribery scheme conducted by the Brazil based construction conglomerate Odebrecht.
The US authorities have not named the two individuals, only describing them as “a consular official” and “an intermediary to a high-level official”.
A €3 million bribe was allegedly paid in exchange for the official’s promise not to provide international authorities with banking records revealing illicit payments from Odebrecht.
Prime Minister Gaston Browne insists that he has not received any bribes.
It is also alleged that the Brazilian construction giant, Odebrecht, acquired Meinl Bank Antigua Limited, exclusively to launder funds.