The two brothers are expected to return to Panama on Wednesday, where they and their father face corruption charges.

The two sons of former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli are expected to return to the country after completing a prison sentence in the United States for their involvement in an international event. Corruption scandal.

Luis Enrique Martinelli Linares and Ricardo Martinelli Linares are due to arrive in Panama on Wednesday night after their release earlier in the day, shortly before the end of their three-year prison sentences in the United States.

They were found guilty of conspiring to launder millions of dollars in bribes to the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht.

In August this year, it was the brothers They are set to stand trial again, this time in Panama, for their involvement in the scandal during their father’s time in office between 2009 and 2014. The brothers admitted to taking $28 million in bribes from the construction group, of which about $19 million passed through U.S. accounts. .

Their father, the elder Martinelli, is awaiting trial on money laundering charges in the Odebrecht case, but has said he will run for president again in 2024. Another former president, Juan Carlos Varela, is also scheduled to go on trial in August. The case, which includes charges against 36 people.

In 2016, Odebrecht Construction admitted to paying $788 million in bribes between 2001 and 2016 to win contracts in Panama and 11 other countries. It paid fines of $3.5 billion.

In December 2021, The Martinelli Brothers Admission of guilt For conspiracy to commit money laundering after they were extradited from Guatemala to the United States. They had been held in Guatemala for 23 months prior extradition.

In May last year they were sentenced to three years in prison in the US, but were released on Wednesday after serving a total of about two-and-a-half years, including time already spent in custody before their conviction. Agence France-Presse reported that the early release of the two brothers was the result of good behavior.

Their return to Panama is being watched closely, particularly as the August trial approaches. Panamanian Attorney General Javier Caraballo made a statement on Tuesday calling on the brothers to face justice in the country.

The brothers put up a $14 million bond upfront to avoid jail time in Panama while they await trial on money laundering and corruption charges.

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