A yearlong investigation by Mongabay and Earthsight has uncovered new evidence of corrupt deals and illegal practices used by Brazil’s largest flooring exporter, Indusparquet, and its suppliers. From its headquarters in São Paulo to the Amazon and the Atlantic Forest, Indusparquet has used fixers to secure secret timber deals from suppliers who have been fined millions for their illegal sourcing practices, while claiming to supply products to high-profile projects like Las Vegas’ Mirage Hotel, the Vatican and Taj Mahal. The company was charged in two bribery lawsuits in Brazil over its use of public officials to gain access to timber supplies. Following a tip-off from an anonymous source, we obtained access to dozens of hours of wiretaps and video footage revealing how Jose Antonio Baggio, the company’s co-founder and defendant in one of the cases, used a local official to secure bracatinga (Mimosa scabrella), a tree species native to the Atlantic Forest — the most threatened Brazilian biome. Requests for further information confirmed that Indusparquet had bought bracatinga from suppliers named in the court case against Baggio during the same period, which the wiretaps show was for an unnamed “U.S. client.” Despite Indusparquet’s claims that court decisions cleared the charges against Baggio and closed the case, there is still room for appeal, as the prosecutors’ office confirmed to Mongabay. The second prosecution we documented was sparked by a major 2018 raid on Indusparquet’s headquarters, code-named Operation Pátio. A federal prosecutor charged the firm with involvement in a 154.37 million reais…This article was originally published on Mongabay Läs mer

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