In this episode, I have back James Koukios, a partner in the law firm of Morrison and Foerster. We review some of the top FCPA and international anti-corruption cases and issues which have occurred over the summer of 2017. The topics are based on the firm’s most excellent monthly newsletter Top Ten International Developments for Anti-Corruption, which is available at no charge on the firm’s website. In this podcast, we discuss topics from the following newsletters:

From the June newsletter 

  1. The Supreme Court decision in Kokesh-what does it mean for prosecutors, what does it mean for compliance practitioners and does it change the calculus around self-disclosure?
  2. DOJ Continues to Pursue “Declinations with Disgorgement.” What does this mean for companies going forward? Should it encourage or discourage self-disclosure?
  3. DOJ Files Forfeiture Complaint in connection with Alleged Malaysia Bribery Scheme. How does this tool relate to anti-corruption enforcement? Why is it such a powerful tool for prosecutors?

From the July newsletter

  1. The Halliburton FCPA enforcement action. What does it mean for the compliance practitioner?
  2. Three Long-Standing Corporate FCPA Investigations End without Charges. What can be learned from these cases about enforcement going forward?
  3. Dimitri Harder was sentenced to Five Years’ Imprisonment for FCPA Violations. What was the basis of the sentence? Do you see anything in this sentencing unusual?
  4. Was the Second Circuit decision in the FOREX trading case a setback for International Law Enforcement Cooperation? What is compelled testimony? What are the implications for international cooperation going forward?

From the August newsletter

  1. Following Undercover Investigation, DOJ Charges Retired U.S. Army Colonel with Conspiring to Bribe Haitian Officials. How do undercover operations work in the FCPA and what they might mean going forward?
  2. UK Financial Reporting Council Announces Plans to Require Increased Anti-Corruption and Bribery Disclosures. What does this mean for US companies doing business in the UK?

Check out the firm’s newsletter or better yet subscribe to it.

In this episode, I visit with Mike Skopets, from Miller & Chevalier on the firm’s Summer 2017 FCPA Report. We discuss the background to the Report and begin with what macro trends the firm identified. We discuss the numbers of resolutions, declinations and investigations and what they might demonstrate. We go into the Linde Gas and CDM Smith declinations with disgorgement and what these two superior decisions portend for the compliance practitioner. We consider the Kokesh decision by the US Supreme Court and what it may mean for not only FCPA enforcement but the compliance professionals decision making calculus for self-disclosure. It is a very interesting wrap up of the first six months of the FCPA world in 2017.

Miller & Chevalier’s Summer 2017 FCPA Report is available at no cost on the firm’s website. You can obtain a copy by clicking here.

In this episode, I visit with Mike Skopets on Miller’s Summer 2017 FCPA Report.

In this episode Mike Volkov and I discuss the two official pronouncements from the Sessions’ Justice Department regarding FCPA enforcement. They were both declinations used under the FCPA Pilot Program, which was announced in April 2016. The first declination involved Linde Gas North America LLC and Linde North America Inc. Linde Gas is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Linde Group, a German based entity which is listed on multiple stock exchanges in Germany, but not listed in the US.  The second declination involved CDM Smith Inc. a privately held company, headquartered in Boston MA. As neither company is a US publicly listed entity, neither is subject to jurisdiction of the SEC. Hence both declinations were granted with the notation of declinations with disgorgement. In Linde Gas, the disgorgement amount was $7.8 million and forfeit $3.4 million, for a total of $11.2 million and in the CDM Smith declination the disgorgement amount was $4.037 million. Both declinations were superior results obtained by the companies as both had clearly violated the FCPA, for multiple years in ongoing bribery and corruption schemes.

For more on these two enforcement actions see the following:

  1. Linde in the Republic of Georgia: A Declination and Lessons Learned by Tom Fox;
  2. A Second Superior Result – CDM Smith Obtains a Declination by Tom Fox; and
  3. Justice Department Resolves Two Cases Under FCPA Pilot Program by Mike Volkov.

Show Notes for Everything Compliance-Episode 14

Topics from Matt:

  1. Trump Administration & FCPA enforcement— we have two declinations now; maybe a compare-and-contrast, and speculation on what a tough Trump Admin enforcement WOULD look like;
  2. EU’s GDPR— Do EU regulators really know what they want to do with enforcement of this law; although if they follow the lead of the anti-competition people whacking Google, it could be a big deal;
  3. Hui Chen’s departure from Justice Department; both her public rebuke of Trump, and the substance of how she believes her guidance has been mis-interpreted; and
  4. Ethical leadership and the lack thereof; the menace of abusing perks and privilege, connecting my posts about Uber’s leaders and Chris Christie vacationing on a closed beach.

Topics from Jay:

  1. How do the Campaign Finance Laws mirror/or differ from the FCPA?
  2. Will the Russian Collusion Investigation reveal the ultimate FCPA violation?
  3. Regarding Walter Shaub’s departure from Office of Governmental Ethics (OGE), does it matter? What is OGE supposed to do and why did it work for the past 40+ years, but fell on deaf ears with the Trump administration?
  4. Dovetailing with Matt’s question about a slow H1 for FCPA enforcement and in light of the just released Gibson Dunn FCPA Mid-Year Report, does the current climate (and lack of vigorous enforcement) provide a perfect storm for companies to look the other way if they fall off the E&C wagon, or do we think that companies are still being vigilant in spite of a perception of decreased enforcement?

Rants follow this week’s episode.

This week, Jay and I return for a wide-ranging discussion on some of the week’s top compliance and ethics related stories, including:

  1. HSBC monitor report protected from release. See article in Reuters by clicking here.
  2. The Odebrecht scandal continues to resonate across South America. See Dick Cassin’s post in the FCPA Blog.
  3. The first half of 2017 has brought the final resolutions of only two FCPA matters from the new administration, but they were both declinations. Both declinations have significantly strengthened the FCPA Pilot Program as a clear path forward for every company that finds itself in FCPA hot water. See Tom’s article in Compliance Week.
  4. Roy Snell says it’s not who’s who but who gets it. See article in SCCE Compliance and Ethics Blog.
  5. Tom announces the rollout of the Compliance Podcast Network. It includes This Week in FCPA, FCPA Compliance Report, Compliance Report-International Edition, 12 O’Clock High, Unfair and Unbalanced, Compliance into the Weeds, Across the Board, Everything Compliance, One Month to a More Effective Compliance Program. See Tom’s article in the FCPA Compliance and Ethics Blog.
  6. The next Everything Compliance podcast is in production. Topics include Walter Shaub’s departure from OGE and does it even matter? Jesse Eisinger’s book The Chickenshit Club; the SFO, UK Bribery Act and the Rolls-Royce enforcement action; differences in DPA practice in the US & UK; Trump Administration & FCPA enforcement; EU’s GDPR; and Hui Chen’s departure from Justice Department; both her public rebuke of Trump, and the substance of how she believes her guidance has been mis-interpreted. Part I will go up on Thursday, July 20.