UPDATE 1-Brazil police widen corruption probe with raids over railway contracts

viernes 26 de febrero de 2016 08:22 GYT

(Adds data on railways, scheduling of press conference)

SAO PAULO Feb 26 (Reuters) - Brazilian federal police said they served search and seizure warrants on Friday across six states and in the federal district of Brasilia focused on suspected bribes and overbilling in two large railway projects.

The warrants were based on testimony in an ongoing corruption probe known as "Operation Car Wash", they said.

In a statement, police said, "Just in the state of Goias, the embezzlement of 630 million reais ($160 million) was detected, for just the segments under construction for the Norte-Sul Railway" project.

After federal prosecutors uncovered massive misuse of funds, bribes, kickbacks, over billing and influence peddling in the state-run oil company Petrobras over the past two years, the investigation has spread into other areas of the economy.

On Thursday, police raided the headquarters of one of Brazil's largest steelmakers Gerdau SA.

Police are scheduled to hold news conference at 10 a.m. (1300 GMT) Brasilia time. (Reporting by Pedro Fonseca; Writing by Reese Ewing; editing by John Stonestreet and W Simon)