Brazil: Judge suspends auctions of ex-billionaire's assets

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A judge has suspended auctions of big-ticket assets belonging to Eike Batista, the business magnate who once was Brazil's richest man and now faces charges of insider trading and market manipulation.

Federal Judge Messod Azulay ordered the postponement of auctions scheduled for this week and early next month. Items included a Lamborghini and a yacht.

According to a court statement Tuesday, the judge said that since the belongings were only recently seized, the auctions would not allow Batista enough time to exhaust the legal channels to get them back.

The assets were seized to guarantee potential compensation payments in case Batista is convicted. More than $1 billion (3 billion reals) worth of financial assets belonging to Batista, his sons, his ex-wife and his girlfriend were also frozen.