Brazilian police believe top Vale (VALE +1.3%) executives and managers deliberately shielded themselves from incriminating information about the state of the company's dam that collapsed in January to avoid liability, WSJ reports, citing a copy of a police inquiry.
Federal police said in a 215-page report that studies conducted by Vale's own consultants in the 12 months leading up to the disaster showed the structure was fragile and eventually would collapse, according to WSJ.
"The top bosses of Vale continued to... boast about the falsely impressive quality of their structures," police wrote in the report. "They closed their eyes to studies commissioned by the company itself, preferring to remain ignorant so that, in a moment like this, they could allege ignorance as their defense."
The report does not offer evidence to back up the accusation, and no official charges against any top Vale executives have been filed.
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