Brazil bribery lawsuit against Keppel, Sembcorp Marine dismissed by US court

EIG, a US investment firm, had named Sembcorp, along with other shipyards and other entities, as defendants in its suit against Brazilian state oil giant Petrobas.
EIG, a US investment firm, had named Sembcorp, along with other shipyards and other entities, as defendants in its suit against Brazilian state oil giant Petrobas. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - Singapore's two biggest oil rig builders Keppel Corp and Sembcorp Marine said on Monday (April 3) that the US District Court for the district of Columbia has ruled in favour of the companies and their subsidiaries, Keppel Offshore & Marine and Jurong Shipyard respectively, in a lawsuit filed by EIG Management against Brazil's national oil company Petrobras.

The court has accordingly dismissed claims against it and its unit, SembMarine said in a filing with the Singapore Exchange before trading opened. Keppel followed with a similar statement at 10:55am.

EIG, a US investment firm, had named Sembcorp and Keppel, their units and other entities, as defendants in its suit against Petrobas, which became embroiled in Brazil's biggest corruption scandal.

 

According to media reports last year, EIG alleged that eight of its managed funds were fraudulently induced to invest over US$221 million (S$308.5 million) equity in now-bankrupt Sete Brasil, Petrobras' rig charterer. The lawsuit also claimed that the contract bidding process for the rigs was rigged and alleged that agents of the two Singapore shipyards paid US$9.5 million (S$13.3 million) in bribes and kickbacks.

Both SembMarine and Keppel had strongly denied involvement in the corruption scheme, exposed in a probe dubbed "Operation Car Wash".