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Petrobras to pay $3bn to US investors in corruption case settlement

Petrobras has agreed a settlement worth almost $3bn (£2.2bn) with investors who claimed a corruption scandal at Brazil’s state oil firm hit the value of their investments.

Petroleo Brasileiro, as it is officially known, has always insisted it is also a victim in the bribery allegations furore.

The company denied any wrongdoing under the terms of the class action deal – yet to be officially sanctioned by a New York judge.

The shareholders sued Petrobras after prosecutors in Brazil accused former executives of accepting more than $2bn in irregular payments over a decade.

The corruption claims emerged after it raised $70bn in a massive share sale in 2010 – with Petrobras positioning itself to maximise Brazil’s massive oil potential after the discovery of vast reserves.

It has since dragged not only the company but Brazil’s political establishment into the mire of sleaze.

Eight former senior executives, including former bosses Maria das Gracas Foster and Jose Sergio Gabrielli, were formally accused of corruption last week by the country’s securities regulator.

Petrobras said it hoped the settlement would resolve all investor claims in the US.

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