Featured Articles:

Gatekeeper Misfires and Corporate Governance Failures

Here is another obvious point – internal controls are intended to ensure compliance with relevant policies and procedures.  Internal controls are not just for show, or not just limited to financial reporting.   A compliance program is a subset of a company’s internal controls. So, all this is well and good.  But it appears that a number of companies have been getting into trouble because they...

Five Basic Steps to Implement a Sanctions Compliance Program

Companies have to implement a sanctions compliance program (SCP).  When I use the term SCP, I mean much more than just having one employee screen a customer before a shipment is sent.  Too many companies are behind the 8-ball when it comes to sanctions compliance. The Treasury Department Office of Foreign Asset Control’s sanctions guidance issued in May 2019 is an extraordinary document and includes...

Webinar: Monitoring Your Third Parties — Digging into Distributor and Agent Risks

Webinar: Monitoring Your Third Parties — Digging into Distributor and Agent Risks December 15, 2020, 12 Noon EST Sign Up HERE Government enforcement actions against companies for anti-corruption, sanctions, money laundering and accounting misconduct often focus on third-party risks. And for good reason — government enforcement actions almost always cite third-party misconduct and complicity in illegal schemes to pay bribes, circumvent sanctions and launder money....

HHS-OIG Warns Drug and Device Companies on Speaker Program Fraud

In a far-reaching action, the Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) issued a Special Fraud Alert underscoring the “inherent fraud and abuse risks” associated with company-sponsored speaker programs.  Copy of Special Alert Here.  HHS-OIG’s Fraud Alert is an important warning to pharmaceutical and medical device companies.  It directly applies to U.S. companies’ domestic speaker programs, but the analysis and observations have...

Citigroup Fined $400 Million by Banking Regulators for Risk and Compliance Control Deficiencies

Banking regulators, the Office of Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve, recently collected a $400 million civil penalty against Citigroup for long-standing deficiencies in its enterprise risk management, compliance controls and overall banking practices. The Consent Order is Here. The aggressive enforcement action was the result of Citigroup’s continuing deficiencies in its operations, risk oversight and management practices.  The OCC cited Citigroup for...

Episode 171 — Promoting an Ethical Culture: Interview of Jeffrey Tilton

The Justice Department and regulatory agencies have emphasized the importance of corporate culture and ethics.  As companies approach this important issue, it is important to examine a variety of strategies to ensure that a corporate culture adheres to ethical standards. Jeffrey Tilton, CFE, a leader in the compliance field, has an interesting perspective on this issue.  In this Episode, Michael Volkov discusses the issue of...

Happy Thanksgiving!

To our clients, colleagues, and friends, we wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!! We are grateful for opportunities to collaborate, and our deep appreciation for your support and friendship. Our very best wishes for a happy and safe Thanksgiving!!

Too Big to be Accountable: The Big Case Dilemma

Over the last twenty year (yes, 20 years), the Justice Department’s civil and criminal enforcement record has come under greater scrutiny.  Whether you call it “Too Big To Jail” or “Too Big to Fail,” questions continue to rise on whether “big” companies are fairly investigated and prosecuted.  On the “Too Big to Fail” scale. DOJ and criminal justice commentators point to the Arthur Andersen criminal...

OFAC Screening and Internal Controls

Companies have had over one year to review and implement a sanctions compliance guidance program.  This last year, however, has been difficult (to say the least) given the COVID-19 pandemic.  Companies have had unusual challenges.  OFAC recognized the impact of COVID-19 when it issued guidance in April 2020 recognizing that companies faced challenging times and may have reallocated resources to meet pandemic needs. Prior to...

Episode 170 — The Beam Suntory FCPA Settlement

Beam Suntory, a global producer and distributor of distilled beverages, settled its FCPA case with DOJ for $19.5 million for bribes paid in India. The DOJ settlement follows an SEC FCPA settlement for $8 million announced on July 2, 2018.  The timing of the FCPA settlements is unusual and suggests that DOJ’s resolution involved unique issues relating to Beam Suntory’s cooperation.  In this Episode, Michael Volkov...