According to documents posted on the Jerseylaw.je website, former São Paolo mayor Paulo Maluf was ordered to pay back the money, “of the order of $10.5m [£6.6m] plus interest”, to the city. The funds have been frozen by a court order since 30 March 2009, the documents note.
Maluf, who is currently a congressman in Brazil’s national government, has denied the charges, and even that he has any offshore accounts. According to the BBC, he maintains that the Jersey court’s ruling, on Friday, “had no legal basis”.
“He said it was for the Brazilian justice system to determine whether there had been irregularities in the construction projects carried out there, and not for a court in Jersey,” the BBC report adds.
According to the court documents, Maluf obtained the money through a fraud that saw him “or others on his behalf” in receipt of 15 “secret payments”, which were transferred out of Brazil with the help of Maluf’s son, Flavio. The money reportedly came from overcharging on municipal construction projects – specifically, a highway known as the Avenida Agua Espraiada.
Paolo Maluf had been mayor of São Paolo between January 1993 and December 1996, and also, between 1979 and 1983, was the governor of the state of São Paolo.
The Jersey institutions in which the Maluf money ended up were Deutsche Bank affiliates, but the court documents stress that apart from two company officers giving evidence in the form of short statements, “Deutsche Bank played no part in the litigation”, which was brought mainly by the city of Sao Paolo against two entities, Durant International Corporation and Kildare Finance Ltd.
These are described as British Virgin Island registered entities allegedly owned or controlled by Paulo and/or Flavio Maluf via another entity, Sun Diamond Ltd.