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'Lula knew everything'

International
Brazillia – Brazil's former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva had “complete knowledge” of the massive political kickback scheme that centred on contracts at state-run oil firm Petrobras, a former top executive testified on Friday.

Former Petrobras engineering and services director, Renato Duque, testifying in the first of five corruption trials Lula faces, told a federal judge that Lula had “command” of the scheme.

But Duque, convicted on corruption charges in four separate trials for taking bribes in the Petrobras scheme and sentenced to more than 56 years in prison, emphasised during his testimony that he was seeking a plea-bargin deal that would reduce his time in prison.

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Brazil's former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva attends a Workers Party (PT) congress in Sao Paulo

Read also: Petrobras scheme: Lula's aide in focus

“I would like to make clear my intention here is to act as a collaborator, to tell the truth,” Duque told Judge Sergio Moro.

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