Rio de Janeiro’s jailed former Gov. Sergio Cabral testified he paid $2 million in bribes to secure hosting rights for the 2016 Olympics, according to his lawyer, Marcio Delambert.
Cabral told a judge Thursday the payment yielded a promise that between six and nine members of the International Olympic Committee would cast their votes for Rio, Delambert said in an email, confirming earlier reports from local media.
Massive construction projects for the 2014 World Cup and the Olympics offered huge opportunities for graft in Latin America’s largest nation.
The subsequent corruption revelations have toppled politicians and executives once thought untouchable, and affected companies’ overseas operations. Ongoing probes have also hurt the recovery of Brazil’s construction sector that was contracted for four straight years, dragging on overall activity.
Cabral told the judge Lamine Diack, former chief of the International Association of Athletics Federations, and his son Papa requested payments of $1.5 million and $500,000, respectively. The lawyer for the elder Diack, William Bourdon, did not respond to a request for comment. His son, who has previously described the corruption allegations as “the biggest lie in the history of world sport,” was not immediately reachable.
French authorities ordered both men to stand trial last month on charges of corruption and money laundering. They previously shared information from their investigation with Brazilian prosecutors, who presented evidence the men, as well as Cabral, participated in the $2 million scheme.
Cabral is currently serving a sentence of just under 200 years imprisonment for corruption and money laundering.