Brazil: Police Detain Politicians In World Cup Investigation

It’s been three years since Brazil hosted the World Cup but corruption investigations continue over the construction of the stadiums. On Tuesday, police detained three senior politicians, including a close aide of the president. The three are accused of inflating the cost of one of the stadiums for the World Cup to receive bribes by the construction company. That stadium said to be Mane Garrincha, which has seen little use since the event.

The suspects were detained by police on Tuesday morning and were seen arriving at police headquarters in Brasilia, Brazil. One of the senior politicians detained over the corruption scandal is Tadeu Filippelli, an adviser in Temer’s cabinet. Filippelli was dismissed from his position as adviser shortly after he was detained.

Costs Inflated

In December 2016, Brazilian authorities said they found that stadium costs had been inflated by construction companies. Brazil had one of the most expensive World Cups in 2014 but most stadiums have seen little use since the event. The Mane Garrincha stadium was one of the costliest but a year after the sporting event, it was being used as a bus depot. The stadium had hosted just two friendly matches at the time. The stadium has seen little use since there are no top division teams based in the capital city. The estimated cost of the stadium tripled to $900 million and the stadium is now one of the most expensive stadiums in football history.

World Cup Costs and Stadiums

Brazil spent around $11 billion preparing for the event, a lot more than the previous World Cup host. South Africa spent around $4 billion for the 2010 World Cup. The high costs were something that many Brazilians didn’t approve, with protests taking place before and during the event.

The emblematic Maracana stadium has also been hit by the corruption scandal. The stadium was renovated for the third time in less than 20 years before the World Cup. Last year, reports mentioned that Maracana costs had been inflated by 17 percent. The stadium, which hosted the 2014 World Cup final and opening ceremony of the 2016 Rio Olympics, has not only been hit by the corruption scandal but also a dispute that left it abandoned and without power for a few weeks. Earlier this year, images showed the stadium in bad conditions. The stadium has since hosted a Copa Libertadores match. The investigation also includes other stadiums that may have also had their costs inflated.