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Brazil's police target Petrobras trades of gasoline and jet fuel

Credit: REUTERS/RICARDO MORAES

Brazilian police on Tuesday expanded the corruption investigation known as Car Wash to alleged kickbacks on international contracts for gasoline and jet fuel at state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA, prosecutors said in a statement.

By Sabrina Valle

RIO DE JANEIRO, Oct 20 (Reuters) - Brazilian police on Tuesday expanded the corruption investigation known as Car Wash to alleged kickbacks on international contracts for gasoline and jet fuel at state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA PETR4.SA, prosecutors said in a statement.

Seven search warrants were being executed on Tuesday morning in Rio de Janeiro and Niteroi cities as part of a new phase of a long-running probe into Petrobras' dealings with some of the world's largest commodity trading firms, prosecutors said.

Car Wash's task force of police and prosecutors found evidence of bribe payments valued at 12 million reais to Petrobras employees in 61 international trade operations closed between 2005 and 2015 through Petrobras offices in Houston, London and Singapore, prosecutors said.

The alleged illegal operations, in which Petrobras employees would be bribed to favor a specific buyer, involved 3.3 billion liters of fuel, according to the statement.

Petrobras said it was learning the facts before it could comment.

(Reporting by Sabrina Valle; additional reporting by Rodrigo Viga; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)

((Sabrina.Valle@thomsonreuters.com;))

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