The entire government of #Brazil is being caught up in a #corruption scandal. From coast-to-coast many in Brazil, which is South American's largest country and economy, are being alleged to be involved in the '#Lava Jato' scandal that has swept across the country. The scandal was first detected three years ago and the investigation into it has since gone down a rabbit hole of money, politicians and corporations.

What is 'Lava Jato'?

The corruption scandal is being called 'Lava Jato', which is Portuguese for 'Operation Car Wash.' 'Lava Jato' is a multi-billion dollar scandal involving hundreds of politicians in various positions across Brazil.

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It is believed by many to possibly be the largest corruption case in modern history. The scandal is named after a gas station in the capital of Brazil where some of the bribe money was laundered.

'Lava Jato' mostly seems to center around Petrobras, Brazil's state-run oil company. The executives of this company, as well as politicians, took bribes from other businesses in exchange for vastly inflated Petrobras work contracts. The total sum of bribes and payoffs looks like it could go past the $5 billion dollar mark.

It may cost Petrobras $13 billion in legal settlements and lost contracts. The company has already had to lay off thousands of workers. Brazil's largest construction company, Odebrecht, is slowly falling apart because of their role in the scandal. Their CEO, Marcelo Odebrecht, was already sentenced to 19 years in jail last March.

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Who is allegedly involved in the scandal?

The man at the center of 'Lava Jato' is Brazil's new President, Michel Temer, who was just elected last August. In recent weeks he has been accused of allegedly arranging and receiving millions of dollars in bribes. Dilma Rousseff, Brazil's previous President who was impeached and removed from office in 2016, is also being accused of receiving tens of millions of dollars. So is Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who was President of Brazil before Rousseff.

It is not just current and former Presidents caught up in the scandal. Eight of President Temer's cabinet ministers are under investigation. Eduardo da Cunha, the former head of the Chamber of Deputies, was already convicted in March of hiding around $40 million in a shell company named Jesus.com.

Hundreds of politicians, ranging from senators, legislators, mayors and political bosses are being caught up in the corruption scandal. It does not just stop at politicians as powerful business executives are also being accused for their role in handing out the bribes.