Tagged: FCPA

Drug and Medical Device Corruption Risks in China

Medical device and pharmaceutical companies know the risks of conducting business in China. Company after company has had to settle FCPA enforcement actions in China. Many of these enforcement actions include fact patterns that are pretty consistent. At the heart of these bribery cases are distributors who are used to funnel bribery payments to healthcare professionals. The expectations and modes of operation are fairly consistent...

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...

A Teaching Moment Inside VimpelCom’s Boardroom

The VimpelCom FCPA settlement underscored the importance of Compliance 2.0 and the need to reform board deliberations and governance. No one can read the facts without shaking their heads and asking – what was the VimpelCom board thinking? The VimpelCom board’s failure to act reflects the key driving force inside the corporate boardroom – defense. When a company is not being led by the board...

The Force Awakens: Vimpelcom’s FCPA Settlement and the Wreckage Left Behind (Part II of II)

The Vimpelcom FCPA enforcement action is stunning in its breadth and the brazen nature of the bribery scheme. It is hard to accept that such conduct stretched into 2011 to 2013, given the significant emphasis placed on anti-corruption enforcement in the corporate governance world. It is easy to ask but hard to imagine how many other major companies are operating with such flimsy attention to...

Return of the Jedi (DOJ): The Vimpelcom Enforcement Action (Part I of II)

Welcome back to the Department of Justice and FCPA enforcement. After a lengthy hiatus, DOJ returned to the FCPA enforcement scene with a demonstration of its full capability, assuming certain individuals are prosecuted criminally out of the case. (I know technically they reappeared with the PTC non-prosecution agreement but give me a little literary license). Overview In a top-10 worthy enforcement action, DOJ and the...

Misconduct in the C-Suite: SEC Settles FCPA Case with CEO

The SEC is setting its sights on individual prosecutions. Both the Justice Department and the SEC have reiterated the importance of prosecuting individuals. DOJ’s Yates Memorandum promises to deliver an increase in civil and criminal prosecutions. The SEC is delivering on its stated goal of increasing individual prosecutions. In a busy FCPA enforcement week, the SEC settled the SciClone Pharmaceuticals case and a separate prosecution...

Embedding the Compliance Message in Middle Management

Chief compliance officers and senior executives wrestle with strategies to spread and embed important compliance messages. A CEO and senior executives can spread a compliance message but they are always battling competing priorities in the overall direction and operation of the company. Nonetheless, we all have seen senior managers who are dedicated to promoting a compliance program, particularly in these days of aggressive enforcement. CCOs...

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...

Corruption and Foreign Government Institutions

The FCPA can create a very one-sided view of corruption. The bribe payer is punished and most times the recipient is not. The Justice Department has used creative approaches to ensnare recipients as in the Direct Partners enforcement action, but for the most part the recipients are not punished nor even publicly identified. Bribery demands can occur in a variety of contexts; sometimes they are...

Beneficial Ownership: Sanctions and FCPA Compliance

Financial institutions have been pushing back hard on FinCEN’s proposal to require banks, investment banks and other financial institutions to identify beneficial owners of account holders. As time goes on the impact of FinCEN’s proposal is diminishing. Why? In general, businesses have other reasons to secure beneficial ownership information. One key concern is sanctions compliance. To the extent an account holder engages in international transactions,...