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FinCEN Settles with Capital One for $390 Million for AML Violations

In a harbinger of future enforcement actions surrounding AML compliance program violations, the Treasury Department’s The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network announced a $390 million settlement with Capital One for weaknesses in its AML program. Capital One was credited $100 million for its 2018 payment to the Office of the Comptroller for AML violations involving its check cashing business unit.  The FinCEN enforcement settlement involved conduct...

Deutsche Bank FCPA and Fraud “Spoofing” Settlement: A Review of Deutsche Bank Conduct (Part II of II)

Deutsche Bank’s ethics and compliance function faces numerous challenges.  Deutsche Bank has a storied record of scandals, government enforcement actions and failures to abide by prior deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs).  When you review these matters, Deutsche Bank’s track record reflects serious culture and control deficiencies, including participation of high-level executives in bribery schemes.  Deutsche Bank’s continuing legal and compliance failures are likely to continue unless...

Deutsche Bank Agrees to Pay $130 Million to Resolve FCPA and Fraud Cases (Part I of II)

Deutsche Bank, the infamous German bank connected to President Trump, settled FCPA and fraud cases with the Justice Department and the SEC, and agreed to pay a total of $130 million.  The settlement included resolution of fraud charges against Deutsche Bank relating to a commodities fraud scheme, commonly referred to as “spoofing.” Under the global resolution, Deutsche Bank agreed to pay: (1) criminal penalties of...

DOJ Files Civil Complaint Against Walmart for Illegal Opioid Distribution

The Justice Department handed Walmart a huge slap in the face last year with the filing of a comprehensive civil case alleging that Walmart knowingly distributed large quantities of opioids in disregard of the law that fueled the national opioids crisis. In a lengthy complaint (160 pages), DOJ outlined Walmart’s serious deficiencies in its compliance program and its unwillingness to spend money needed to prevent...

Episode 178 — The Corporate Transparency Act: Interview of Scott Greytak, Transparency International, and Erica Hanichak, The Fact Coalition

Congress enacted The Corporate Transparency Act, as part of the National Defense Authorization Act.  The CTA expands beneficial ownership disclosure requirements for US entities.  The new disclosure requirements target shell companies and small businesses to ensure disclosure beneficial ownership information. Liz Slim, Senior Counsel at The Volkov Law Group, interviews Scott Greytak from Transparency International USA, and Erica Hanichak from the FACT Coalition and review...

Sabre Travel Services Settles Data Breach Charges with State Attorneys General for $2.4 Million

Sabre Corporation, the travel technology company, agreed to pay $2.4 million as a settlement with twenty-seven (27) State Attorneys General for a 2017 data breach involving hotel booking services.  In 2017, Sabre suffered a major data breach involving 1.3 million credit cards. Sabre was cited for failing to adhere to state laws governing breach notification and data security in response to a cyberattack against Sabre’s...

OFAC 2020 Review: Enforcement Themes and Common Violations (Part II of II)

The 2020 OFAC enforcement record underscores the importance of sanctions compliance.  Yet, companies appear to move slowly in response to sanctions risks, often relying on outdated or outmoded screening technologies and failing to build basic policy controls and procedures. In reviewing the 2020 enforcement actions, many of the cases involve common miscues and compliance failures.  These cases fall into the following categories: (1) basic screening...

2020 OFAC Sanctions Enforcement Year in Review (Part I of II)

The pandemic and its impact is the story of 2020 – no doubt.  Federal prosecutors and regulatory enforcement agencies faced unprecedented challenges. In the face of these challenges,  however, enforcement almost across the board continued with some significant exceptions relating to individual criminal enforcement.  Prosecutors faced almost impossible obstacles to convening grand juries and conducting court proceedings while the deadly pandemic raged. Despite the challenges...

2020: What a Year! The Important Keys to Rebuilding a Positive Corporate Culture

Whew!  2020 is over and we can start the New Year with hope – a fresh approach to restoring life “as it was before.”  It is hard to imagine life before 2019 because no matter what – we have been changed forever.  So, we need to let go of whatever notion we have of pre-pandemic life.  A positive way to approach this new year is...

The Curious Absence of Corporate Monitors

In 2020, the Justice Department did not insist on the appointment of any independent compliance monitors.  The year before, in 2019, DOJ insisted on the appointment of three independent corporate monitors – MTS Telecommunications, Fresenius and Wal-Mart.  If you ask me to distinguish between these cases and Goldman Sachs, Novartis or Herbalife, I would be hard pressed to provide a cogent explanation.  Granted, we are...