Tagged: Chief Compliance Officer

CCOs: Living in the Land of False Promises

We all have heard the scenario involving a compliance professional. A new CCO joins a company with promises from the board, the CEO and senior executives of cooperation, compensation and support for a robust independent compliance function. The new CCO arrives with an idealistic spirit only to discover that he or she has been misled. Sure, the CCO has a title, and a nice salary,...

New and Important Compliance Standards in DOJ’s Recent FCPA Guidance (Part II of II)

The importance of DOJ’s hiring of Hui Chen as Compliance Counsel was recently confirmed by DOJ’s release of new compliance remediation standards for FCPA compliance programs. DOJ has, once again, raised the bar on FCPA compliance programs. Compliance practitioners have a real and significant voice on behalf of the compliance function inside the Justice Department. In adopting a new pilot program for FCPA enforcement and...

Honest Assessment of the CCO-CEO Relationship

One very accurate indicator of a compliance program is the relationship between the CEO and the Chief Compliance Officer. If a CCO is repeatedly making excuses for a CEO who does not devote enough time to compliance, you can rest assured that the compliance program is nowhere near effective. Let’s start with the basics. Almost 60 percent of CCOs now report directly to the CEO....

Writing Effective and Clear Compliance Policies

In the press of compliance priorities, chief compliance officers have to prioritize what is important and what is not. In some respects, the task of a CCO is a continuous loop of prioritizing tasks. CCOs know that the job is never done – once a set of tasks is done, there is always a new list of tasks that need to be prioritized. One of...

SciClone Pharmaceuticals: A Textbook Case of FCPA Violations for Gifts, Meals, Entertainment and Travel

The Securities and Exchange Commission continues its steady march as the prominent FCPA enforcement agency against corporations.  The Justice Department has not brought any enforcement actions this year and continues to reevaluate its FCPA compliance program. In an interesting enforcement action, the SEC settled a case with SciClone Pharmaceuticals for $12.8 million for violations occurring in China. Unlike many other SEC enforcement actions, the SEC’s...

Digging Into Your Internal Controls

Corruption risks follow the money. If a company has effective controls over money, then the company has a good chance of mitigating corruption risks. A key indicator of a company’s internal controls is to ask if the company has suffered any significant fraud in the last five years. If your company has experienced a high fraud rate, the company’s controls may be weak and corruption...

Learning from Schlumberger’s Mistakes: Doing Business Under Iran General License H

Lauren Connell, Managing Associate at The Volkov Law Group, rejoins us for a posting on sanctions compliance.  She can be reached at lconnell@volkovlaw.com. Implementation Day has been hailed as a new stage in Iran-US relations. There has been significant media coverage of how sanctions are being lifted, with various outlets suggesting that Iran is now “open for business.” In reality, that is far from true....

Fraud and Bribery: Segregation of Duties

Some things go together. Chocolate chip cookies and milk, Hepburn and Tracy, Lewis and Martin (I know, I am showing my age, but you get the point), and many other favorite combinations. So, you get the point – in the world of anti-bribery compliance, and another in my series of profound grasps of the obvious – fraud and bribery go hand in hand. One of...

The Changes to Iran Sanctions and Compliance Challenges

Putting aside the politics surrounding the Iran Nuclear Deal, the exchange of prisoners and other hot button political issues surrounding Implementation Day and the change in US-Iran relations, the new Iran sanctions create a new set of challenges for trade compliance officers. Talk about a headache — all you have to do is look at the new guidance, Frequently Asked Questions, and related documentation (Here)....

Prosecuting CCOs v. Holding CCOs Accountable

There has been a lot written about CCOs fearing prosecution for compliance failures. Not to say there is no risk, but the truth lies really in the middle.  From my perspective, there is too much fear-mongering around this issue. Let’s look at one extreme – a CCO who engages in misconduct should be prosecuted. A good example of this case is the prosecution of Thomas...