Brazil opens investigation into McDonald’s

A federal prosecutor in Brazil on Thursday opened a criminal investigation into McDonald’s and its Latin American master franchise owner, Arcos Dorados Holdings, saying that they and related entities may have engaged in “fiscal and economic crimes.”

The prosecutor, Marcos José Gomes Corrêa, is looking into whether McDonald’s and Arcos, which subfranchises McDonald’s restaurants in Latin America, have failed to comply with tax and other laws in Brazil, in addition to possible violations of the country’s franchise law.

The possible tax law violations include accusations made by Brazilian labor unions that Arcos paid bribes to government officials in return for favors from Brazil’s tax collection regulator.

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