Miss Venezuela pageant suspended after claims former contestants received money in exchange for sex

Miss Venezuela contestants.
Miss Venezuela contestants. Photo credit: Reuters

Miss Venezuela has been temporarily shut down following allegations of sexual favours and financial corruption among past participants.

The controversy began when a number of people were arrested as part of an anti-corruption case involving a state owned oil company in 2017, the BBC reports.

Former contestants of Miss Venezuela then came forward alleging some of the past participants had benefitted from the corruption.

It has been alleged the women were taking money from businessmen and government officials in exchange for sexual favours.

Following the accusations Miss Venezuela organisers suspended auditions and launched an investigation into whether anyone involved in the competition had broken with the event's values.

A centre charged with preparing candidates for the competition has also been closed.

Venezuela is one of the most successful countries to take part in international beauty pageants, with seven Miss Universe and six Miss World title winners.

The country is currently in the midst of a hyperinflation crisis with $1NZD equal to 31,729 Venezuelan Bolívar.

Newshub.