BRAZIL, São Paulo. Brazil’s federal police on Wednesday arrested Wesley Batista, the chief executive of JBS SA, the world’s No. 1 meatpacker, accusing him of insider trading ahead of a plea bargain he signed this year whose disclosure pummeled the company’s stock. This was reported by Reuters.
The accusations could hurt a plea deal that both brothers signed in May in relation to a three-year graft probe that has shocked Brazil’s political and business establishment.
The insider trading case involving JBS follows probes by markets watchdog CVM on trades that took place before the plea deal was leaked to the press on May 17. The impact from the leak, which ensnared senior politicians, led to Brazil’s worst financial market selloff in at least a decade.
According to police investigators, the Batistas were aware of the market impact that their plea deal would have on JBS shares and the currency. Police said the brothers created a strategy to protect their JBS holding and help the company amass large foreign-currency positions ahead of the leak.