Ecuador's former vice president Jorge Glas, who was serving prison time for receiving bribes from Brazilian construction firm Odebrecht, is surrounded by reporters after his release from prison in Quito on November 28, 2022
Quito (AFP) - Ecuador’s former vice president Jorge Glas has been released from prison after serving time for corruption in a vast scandal involving the Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht.
Glas was jailed in 2017 for receiving millions of dollars in kickbacks from Odebrecht in a graft scandal that has seen several former Latin American presidents implicated or dragged into court.
Glas, 53, left the Pichincha Nº2 prison in the north of the capital Quito on Monday night after a judge issued an injunction in his favor, said prison administration body SNAI.
The judge’s decision comes after a court earlier this month annulled a separate conviction in which Glas was sentenced in 2021 to eight years for misuse of public funds.
This allowed his lawyers to request an early release on probation on two other corruption charges – with sentences of six and eight years respectively – as he had served more than 40 percent of the sentences.
The SNAI said it would “abide by the judge’s decision,” but left open the possibility of filing an appeal as there had been no “threat or infringement” of Glas’s rights.
Glas was briefly freed for about a month in April over poor health, but a court ordered him to serve out the rest of his sentence.
He served as the vice president under leftist Rafael Correa between 2013 and 2017, and under president Lenin Moreno until he was stripped of his office in 2018.
Correa has also been sentenced to eight years in jail for corruption, but is living in exile in Belgium.
According to the US Justice Department, Odebrecht paid $788 million in bribes across 12 countries to secure public works contracts.
Earlier this month, a Panama court ordered two of its former presidents to stand trial over the scandal.