Troves of art work are being uncovered in two separate corruption cases continents away from each other. The Petrobras bribery scandal that may bring down Brazil’s president has unearthed more than 200 works of art that prosecutors believe are the fruits of corruption:
A Brazilian museum Thursday received 139 works of art, including a painting by Joan Miro, seized from individuals involved in the corruption scandal rocking state oil giant Petrobras. Works by Brazilian artists Djanira and Heitor dos Prazeres were among the trove that police delivered to the Oscar Niemeyer Museum in the city of Curitiba. Local media reported that the majority of artwork was seized from Petrobras’ former director of services Renato Duque, who was arrested Monday. He was detained in connection with a kickbacks and political payoffs scheme that allegedly siphoned off $3.8 billion from Petrobras. Another 64 seized works had already been given to the museum, including pieces by Salvador Dali and Vik Muniz.
Meanwhile, the case of the Romanian Finance Minister who resigned has come to include a greater number of works than reported last week:
The Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) said Valcov was suspected of having indirectly acquired the paintings with money obtained through suspect deals. Prosecutors said the works had been hidden by four of his friends.
Apart from the three works signed by Picasso, the paintings include pieces by Renoir and Andy Warhol, as well as Romanian painters Corneliu Baba and Nicolae Grigorescu. The artworks are currently being officially identified and certified by art experts. Investigators previously found three paintings, including one signed “Renoir,” in a friend’s safe along with 82,000 euros ($90,000) in cash and gold ingots.