The judge previously presiding over ‘negative billionaire’ Eike Batista’s trial is under investigation for embezzlement, money laundering, and fraud, Bloomberg reported Friday.
Judge Flavio Roberto de Souza admitted to embezzling $US265,000 in drug money in a statement on Thursday. According to the article, the judge had spoken out against corruption in a Bloomberg interview right before the start of Batista’s insider trading trial.
He was removed from Batista’s case after he was seen driving the former tycoon’s seized white Porsche. Souza defended himself by claiming he drove the car to his personal building’s garage for its protection.
Batista had more than $US30,000 in cash and possessions, real estate, and several cars and jets seized by officials last month, after they suspected he was selling and donating frozen assets.
At one point, Batista’s net worth reached $US35 billion as the richest man in Brazil. Since then, his self-made empire came crumbling down and he was accused of selling off shares based on privileged information before its fall. He now owes more than $US1 billion.
In March, officials reported more than $US10,000 in cash missing from Batista’s seized assets. Souza was put under criminal investigation at the time.