Tagged: bribery

Drug Companies and Charitable Patient Foundations

Charitable organizations can easily become enmeshed in Justice Department enforcement issues. We have seen charities used in FCPA cases as a means to funnel bribes to government officials, spouses or family members. In the domestic world of drugs and anti-kickback laws, drug company relationships with patient foundations are now being examined for possible violation of anti-kickback laws. Government scrutiny of drug prices is occurring on...

FCPA Compliance: Does “Anything of Value” Really Mean “Anything of Value”?

The FCPA statute is not as vague as some contend. I remember the words of a former FTC Chairperson who told me once – “The Clayton Act is not vague. I just read the law and apply it to the facts.” Not to be too simplistic, I recognize there are legitimate disputes surrounding application of the FCPA to specific situations. As one example, I have...

The FCPA Implications of the Supreme Court’s McDonnell Decision – A Mountain Out of a Molehill?

The Supreme Court’s decision in the McDonnell case was expected. It was evident that the Supreme Court was going to reverse the convictions when it granted a stay of McDonnell’s sentence and agreed to hear the case. Sometimes we all suffer from FCPA myopia and see the world only through the FCPA lens. The McDonnell case has very little that is directly applicable to the...

The SEC’s Love Affair with Internal Controls

The SEC has been flexing its muscles lately. If you had some of the enforcement tools the SEC has, you would be doing the same. What am I referring to? The FCPA statute includes broad provisions requiring companies to maintain adequate internal controls and accurate books and records. If taken literally, these prohibitions can be applied to many situations to support aggressive SEC enforcement actions....

Akamai and Nortek – DOJ Touts Declinations Under FCPA Pilot Program

DOJ’s FCPA Unit knows what they are doing. In the immediate weeks after the release of the FCPA Pilot Program, DOJ publicly released two declination letters for Akamai Technologies and Nortek, Inc. and the SEC announced disgorgement settlements of $671 thousand and $321 thousand, respectively. These two actions, however, will not solve DOJ’s bigger problem – the FCPA Pilot Program needed to offer a bigger...

Corruption Risks and Corporate Social Responsibility Spending

Global companies have been embracing socially responsible spending projects to build stronger relationships with local communities. The idea makes a lot of sense and real projects can result in real benefits. As with any significant source of money, there are risks. Major global companies have been caught in some embarrassing situations, some of which can have real legal and reputational consequences. Think of the irony...

The McDonnell Case: Supreme Court Weighs Limiting Bribery Statute

We all suffer from a little myopia. Following FCPA enforcement and compliance issues makes a lot of sense in today’s enforcement environment. However, there is plenty of domestic enforcement of bribery laws – the New York corruption investigations and prosecutions and the recent high-profile prosecution of Virginia Governor McDonnell are just a few of the high profile domestic prosecutions. The Supreme Court recently heard argument...

Creating a Real Incentive for Self-Reporting FCPA Violations (Part II of II)

Let’s start with a big “If.” I know that sounds like a real turn off but bear with me. Assuming that the Justice Department is ready to turn over a new approach to criminal enforcement and aggressively prosecute culpable individuals in white collar crime investigations, would it be a good idea to offer a pass, or leniency to the company if the company self-reports the...

Campaigning for Self-Reporting and Calculation of Incentives (Part I of II)

Just to add to the cacophony of voices campaigning during this primary season, DOJ, SEC, FINRA, and CFTC officials launched their own campaign promoting recent initiatives to increase corporate self-reporting of potential violations. After months of announcements, which were preceded by internal wrangling and bureaucratic leaks, DOJ has put in place its new initiative – the Yates memorandum to focus on individual culpability and a...

Olympus: A Culture of Bribery and Kickbacks

When compliance officers read about a major Justice Department settlement action, we can all hear the collective sigh of relief – “Thank goodness, that did not happen here in my company.” The recent Olympus settlement is another in a long line of cases where any shred of corporate culture of integrity has been replaced with a culture of bribery and kickbacks, or other kids of...