Tagged: Securities and Exchange Commission

Global Standardization of Enforcement

Maybe I am a Luddite; maybe I just do not understand the new world and the impact of globalization. New ideas do not scare me, like others we know. New ideas present real opportunities for progress and innovation. I understand the impact that globalization has had on our economy, our society and our country. There are many positive benefits that flow from this incredible transformation...

Global Construction and Corruption

With increasing focus on infrastructure projects and greater public demand for improvements, governments are preparing to ramp up construction projects. Part of the budgeting process has to acknowledge the cost of corruption. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that construction and corruption go hand-in-hand. Corruption occurs in construction projects because of the incendiary mix of money, government bureaucracy, and lack of...

Watch Michael Volkov on Bureau van Dijk Webinar Addressing Third-Party Due Diligence

I was honored to conduct a live, video webinar last week on third party due diligence, focusing on the importance of beneficial ownership.  My co-panelists were Bill Hauserman and Ted Datta from Bureau van Dijk. You can watch the webinar and download the slides from the webinar (here). I have been impressed with BvD’s product offering – key tools in your third party screening process...

Fixing a Sour Corporate Culture: Valeant Pharmaceuticals Faces an Uphill Challenge

Like the Greek mythology character Sisyphus, Valeant Pharmaceutical is attempting to atone for its sins and turn its corporate culture around. I am not usually a cynic but when I see these transparent attempts to reverse a company’s culture, I have a degree of suspicion. In recent weeks, Valeant took the following steps: Hired a new CEO Joseph Papa Removed five directors from its board...

Panama Papers: Prosecutors Launch Investigations

When a scandal hits the media like the Panama Papers leak of 11.5 million confidential legal records, we all know what to expect. Criminal investigations, regulatory responses, and of course, congressional hearings of some sort so that everyone gets a piece of the scandal pie. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (“ICIJ”) reported the leak of 11.5 million confidential legal records designed to expose shell...

Private Equity and the Och-Ziff Enforcement Action

Since 2010, the Justice Department and the SEC have been “investigating” a number of private equity and hedge funds for FCPA violations. The launch of the inquiries was a big deal with lots of fanfare and focus on private equity corruption risks. In time, nothing happened. Well, that is about to change. DOJ and the SEC are getting close to announcing a large settlement with...

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...

Las Vegas Sands $9 Million SEC Settlement: An Easy Mark

The SEC continues its cutting edge FCPA enforcement program, bringing in a variety of enforcement cases and employing some new strategies. In its latest foray, the SEC settled with Las Vegas Sands, owned by Sheldon Adelson, for $9 million for deficiencies in its internal accounting controls concerning its operations in China and Macao. The SEC’s enforcement action reflects one important theme – they could not...

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...