(Corrects to say Grupo BTG Pactual bought a stake in Banco
Panamericano from original owner, not Caixa Econômica Federal's
SAO PAULO, April 19 Brazil's federal police said
they had conducted raids on Wednesday as part of an
investigation into the purchase of Banco Panamericano SA shares
by Caixa Participações SA, parent company of national savings
bank Caixa Econômica Federal.
The investigation is to determine whether Caixa Econômica
Federal managers committed a fraud that might have caused bank
clients to lose money, police said in a statement.
Caixa Econômica Federal said in a statement it is
cooperating with the investigation, which is the latest scandal
rocking Brazil's political and business establishment.
The federal court that authorized the raids also froze 1.5
billion reais ($483 million) of assets belonging to the targets
of the probe, the police said, adding that 200 officers were
serving 46 search warrants in various states.
Banco Pan, as Banco Panamericano is now called,
confirmed in a statement that its headquarters were raided in
connection with the probe into the purchase of its shares by
Caixa Participações in 2009.
Banco Pan said it was cooperating with the authorities and
that the investigation did not involve its current managers and
Preferred shares of Banco Pan fell as much as 7 percent in
early trading to the lowest since early February before paring
back losses to around 1 percent. An index tracking financial
companies listed on the São Paulo Stock Exchange rose
Without naming any of the targets of the investigation,
police said they identified civil servants, consulting firms and
businessmen involved in the scheme.
The unnamed people were responsible for signing contracts
and expert opinions that resulted in the acquisition of Banco
Panamericano shares by Caixa Participações, the police statement
In 2011, Grupo BTG Pactual SA bought a stake in
Banco Panamericano from original owner Grupo Silvio Santos, with
privately held deposit guarantee fund FGC acting as a guarantor.
Police said 30 of the search warrants were carried out in
São Paulo, six in Rio de Janeiro and six in the federal capital
of Brasília. They also conducted raids in Belo Horizonte, Recife
BTG Pactual acquired a 37.6 percent stake in Banco
Panamericano for 450 million reais, marking its debut in retail
BTG Pactual did not have an immediate comment.
($1 = 3.1070 reais)
(Reporting by Pedro Fonseca; Writing by Ana Mano; Editing by
Lisa Von Ahn, Bernard Orr)