The alleged bribe was paid for securing a contract for supplying three EMB 145 aircraft to the Indian Defense Research and Development Organization in 2008. These planes were to be equipped with indigenously-built Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) radars. Embraer delivered the last plane in 2013.
The issue of bribery appeared when a Brazilian newspaper revealed that the United States justice department had launched probe against Embraer regarding a contract between the Brazilian firm and the Dominican Republic. The investigation was later expanded to business dealings with eight other countries including India. According to the Indian Defence Procurement Policy, employing middlemen for securing any defense contract is illegal.