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Happy Thanksgiving from The Volkov Law Group

To all our clients, friends, colleagues, partners and family, Happy Thanksgiving. Please enjoy the holiday and take a moment to share your gratitude with others in your life. All the best for a wonderful holiday.

The Ins and Outs of the Ghana Bribery Scheme (Part II of II)

This is a very complicated case, Maude. You know, a lotta ins, a lotta outs, a lotta what-have-yous. And, uh, a lotta strands to keep in my head, man. Lotta strands in old Duder’s head. – The Dude, The Big Lebowski Each FCPA case provides valuable lessons in the mechanics of bribery schemes and the common techniques used by violators to secure funds and make illegal payments to...

Goldman Sachs Official Indicted Over Ghana Bribery Scheme (Part I of II)

Talk about a reminder of the past, Asante Berko, a former Executive Director in Goldman Sachs, recently was arrested in London on criminal FCPA charges arising from his involvement in a bribery scheme in Ghana. The surprising part of the case was the delay in his arrest – over 2 years.  In 2020, Berko was charged by the SEC for FCPA violations.  He settled the...

FATF Blacklists Myanmar for “Strategic Deficiencies” in Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Infrastructure

Alexander Cotoia, Regulatory Manager and Senior Consultant at The Volkov Law Group PC, rejoins us for a posting on Myanmar AML risks. Alex can be reached at [email protected] On October 21, 2022, the global Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”) added the nation of Myanmar to its so-called “blacklist” of jurisdictions with “strategic deficiencies” in their legal and regulatory regimes that permit illicit financial activity such...

Bureau of Industry Security Ramping Up Export Control Enforcement

The Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security promised aggressive enforcement of export controls.  BIS’s promise extended beyond the Russian-Belarus export controls.  BIS has kept its promise. WEBs Electronics Trading Company In a recent charging letter, BIS stated that WEBS Electronics Trading Company, a United Arab Emirates company, violated U.S. export controls by shipping or trying to ship $50,000 worth of U.S.-origin telecommunications items...

Modernizing Medicine Settles False Claims Act Violations for $45 Million

The Justice Department continues to pile up healthcare enforcement actions — false claims, anti-kickback, and fraud.  DOJ is on its way to a record year. In a recent enforcement action, Modernizing Medicine (“ModMed”), an electronic health record (“EHR”) vendor, agreed to pay $45 million for AKS and False Claims Act violations for receiving bribes in exchange for referrals and causing users to falsely report information...

SEC Implements Clawback Rules

The “hot” regulatory and compliance issue is incentives (and conversely disincentives).  The Justice Department has launched an initiative to require compliance programs to institute clawbacks and other measures to recover bonuses and benefits from senior executives and managers that commit misconduct.  The Justice Department directed the Criminal Division to study this issue and propose additional measures to ensure that bad actors are punished financially. Right...

Antitrust Division Secures First Criminal Attempted Monopolization Guilty Plea in Decades

In yet another indication of the renewed, aggressive antitrust enforcement program, the Justice Department recently announced the first attempted criminal monopolization case in decades — Nathan Nephi Zito, the president of a paving and asphalt company in Billings, Montana, pleaded guilty to attempting to monopolize the market for highway crack-sealing services in Montana and Wyoming. In a famous civil prosecution in the 1980s, Robert L....

Former MoviePass Executives Indicted for Securities Fraud

The old adage — if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably isn’t — still rings true when it comes to MoviePass, which ultimately resulted in a criminal indictment charging two former executives with securities fraud. Theodore Farnsworth and Mitchell Lowe were charged with a scheme to defraud investors through materially false and misleading representations relating to MoviePass’ parent company, Helios &...

Bribery in the Pharmaceutical Industry — Avanir Pharma

We always focus on foreign bribery — the FCPA and corporate bribery of foreign officials.  It is certainly a problem that undermines economic development and human rights. However, bribery and corruption is real and significant in the United States, from local to state to federal government officials, the news is filled with instances of bribery and corruption.  Wherever there is money flowing, there is sure...