Category: General

Sharing the Spotlight: M&A Due Diligence

Everyone likes to talk about the importance of due diligence. A whole new due diligence industry has grown, starting with initial anti-money laundering requirements and stretching into corruption and sanctions issues. Do not misunderstand me – due diligence procedures are critical for a company, especially when it comes to third parties. The focus, or perhaps even the obsession, has been with third parties. Once you...

The Important Distinction Between Ethics and Compliance

I know that I can be a stickler for details sometimes. Ask my children. Ask my wife. So, when it comes to compliance, I repeat myself often when I remind everyone: it is ethics and compliance, not just compliance. Let’s be honest – it is more than mouthful to say chief ethics and compliance officer, as opposed to just chief compliance officer. But as I...

Jodi Arias: Bordering on Death?

Just when we thought Jodi Arias had receded into the shadows of notorious sociopathic killers, she has returned for yet another drama-filled narcissistic replay of her depraved indifference to life and humanity. The Jodi Arias show, Part II, the Sentencing Hearing has begun. Even though there is a blackout of television coverage until a verdict is reached, we are all glued again to television reports,...

Knowing When to Fold — Arguing the FCPA’s Definition of “Foreign Official”

With lots of fanfare, Esquenazi and Rodriguez, and the usual suspects filed a cert petition and briefs in support of the appeal from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision affirming the lower court’s interpretation of “instrumentality,” and the significant criminal sentences handed out to the two defendants. The petition was denied quickly.  No one should have  been surprised, including all the usual suspects.  I...

Internal investigations and the Importance of Witness Interviews

Everyone claims to know how to conduct an internal investigation. Given the government’s reliance on internal investigations, law firms have beefed up their internal investigation services. Inevitably, the quality of internal investigations will be mixed. Internal investigations can cost lots of money, especially when conducting a global investigation. Avon and other companies have been hit with astronomical legal bills in authorizing and conducting internal investigations...

China and Antitrust Enforcement

China’s entry into the anti-corruption enforcement arena has received lots of press attention. Just as significant as this development, China has added international cartel enforcement to its list of priorities. With far less fanfare, China has found “religion” when it comes to prosecuting price fixing conduct. China’s National Development and Reform Commission (“NDRC”) has expended its focus to include multinationals that engage in cartels. More...

Supply Chain Management: Avoiding Headaches

Companies implementing due diligence programs face a number of challenges. It is hard enough to identify all of a company’s third-party intermediaries – agents, distributors, customs and logistics representatives, nominees, and professionals, just to name a few. Getting your arms around these third parties to make sure they are subject to due diligence, and monitored and audited can be difficult. Risk-ranking formulas can be used...

Goodbye Mr. Millikin: GM’s Continuing Culture Challenges

The GM debacle over its handling of the ignition switch defect continues. GM’s CEO Mary Barra and the rest of GM’s leadership just do not seem to be getting the message. It is not unusual for C-Suite executives to lead from an ivory tower. In the face of a dramatic governance breakdown, GM has failed to take extraordinary steps to demonstrate that it understands the...

Higher Education Compliance and the Scourge of Campus Sexual Assaults

Chief Compliance Officers who lament the challenges of their jobs should be thankful they are not in charge of compliance for higher education institutions. The culture of compliance has extended into many high-risk areas but one area where compliance is catching up is higher education. Universities and colleges face a myriad of regulatory requirements, many of which are imposed by federal and state governments in...