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Brazil ex-billionaire Batista out of jail


Brazilian businessman Eike Batista arrives at the Federal Police headquarters after being arrested on corruption charges related to the “Car Wash” operation in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on August 8, 2019. – Brazil’s former richest man, Batista, who was under house arrest since 2017, was jailed Thursday on charges of money laundering. (Photo by MAURO PIMENTEL / AFP)

Once one of the world’s richest men, Brazilian entrepreneur Eike Batista was out of jail Sunday after having been detained for violating terms of his house arrest, prison officials said.

“He went out Saturday night,” a prisons spokesperson told AFP.

Appeals Court judge Simone Schreiber ruled earlier Saturday that the detention of the magnate once considered Brazil’s richest man “violated the Constitution… and the principle of presumption of innocence.”

Batista, 62, had been under house arrest pending an appeal of a 30-year jail sentence.


Then on Thursday, he was arrested in Rio de Janeiro on suspicion of insider trading and money laundering, the news portal G1 said.

An emblem of Brazil’s boom years, Batista amassed a fortune with investments in mining and oil that in 2012 put him in seventh place on the Forbes magazine list of the world’s wealthiest people.

But by 2013 a downturn in the commodities market wiped out a fortune that had been estimated at $30 billion.

Batista later came under scrutiny in the vast “Car Wash” investigation, which revealed mass corruption by public officials linked to state oil company Petrobras.

Brazil’s security commission in May fined him around $134 million for insider trading.

In 2018, Batista was sentenced to 30 years in prison for corruption and money laundering. He was found guilty of paying a $16.5 million bribe to former Rio governor Sergio Cabral.

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