BRAZIL, Sao Paulo. Prosecutors in Brazil were formally asked to bring insider trading charges against brothers Wesley and Joesley Batista, owners of meatpacker JBS SA. Under Brazilian law, prosecutors lodge formal charges after police conclude investigations.
Federal prosecutors allege that the brothers authorized the sale of millions of JBS shares before submitting evidence under a plea deal related to prior bribery and corruption charges stemming from bribes paid to almost 2,000 Brazilian officials. Once the plea deal was struck, stock prices fell and the Batistas repurchased them at significantly lower prices.
The Batistas testimony caused three corruption charges against President of Brazil, Michael Temer. Under Brazilian law, only the Supreme Court can try the president, and only when two-thirds of the house of Congress votes to allow it. Lawmakers blocked the first charge of alleged bribery in August, according to Reuters.
A vote by Congress on the remaining charges of obstruction of justice and racketeering against Temer is expected in the coming weeks.