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Argentine prosecutors target Meinl Bank Antigua in corruption probe

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Argentine prosecutors target Meinl Bank Antigua in corruption probe

Argentine prosecutors have asked authorities in Antigua for information concerning accounts at Meinl Bank (Antigua) Ltd., a bank that was used by scandal-plagued Brazilian engineering firm Odebrecht SA to facilitate bribe payments, Bloomberg News reported, citing Anthony Armstrong, Antigua's director of public prosecutions.

The request from Argentina was submitted as part of a probe into possible bribes involved in a local construction project, "a person familiar with the probe in Argentina" told the news outlet.

Odebrecht has admitted using accounts at the bank to funnel millions of dollars in bribes to politicians, business executives and regulators across the globe. The company has confessed to paying $35 million in bribes in Argentina alone during the period from 2007 to 2014, according to the report.

Argentina and Antigua have a bilateral treaty that enables the exchange of information in criminal cases, and Armstrong said Antigua is "processing the request" but is unsure of how long it will take.

In March, Colombia's attorney general alleged that Odebrecht acquired a majority stake in Meinl Bank in 2010, supposedly to help it channel bribes.