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Back To The 1980’s


The 1980’s saw Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement activity (see here for a summary of actions) as well as legislative developments as the FCPA – after several years of consideration – was finally amended in 1988.

Beyond these developments, there was also much FCPA media coverage on a range of topics and this post excerpts certain articles found in the Wall Street Journal during the 1980s.

Among other things, this media coverage demonstrates that there was angst regarding the ambiguous FCPA and that several companies were the subject of FCPA scrutiny without ultimately resolving an enforcement action. In the modern era, some have wrongly used the term “declination” to refer to such an event, but such events have occurred throughout FCPA history as the government routinely did not bring “flimsy,” “implausible” or “unproven” (terms used in the media coverage) enforcement actions.

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Principal Deputy Assistant AG Cronan Delivers Yet Another FCPA Speech


On October 18th, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Cronan delivered a speech in Brazil at an event hosted by a for-profit business that generally charges people to attend (see here for the prior post). On October 25th, Cronan delivered another speech in Washington, D.C. at another event hosted by the same for-profit business.

Why DOJ (and SEC) officials allows themselves to be used in such a way by profit-seeking businesses to drive attendance to their events is beyond me. (See prior posts here and here, among many others, for why the selling of FCPA enforcement attorneys needs to stop).

Ethics aside, in his speech Cronan talked about the DOJ’s priorities with respect to corporate enforcement, what the DOJ expects “from companies who choose to voluntarily self-disclose misconduct and seek to cooperate with law enforcement,” and the DOJ’s “commitment to reaching fair and equitable resolutions, including through the principles reflected in the Criminal Division’s policy with respect to monitors.”

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Deputy Assistant Attorney General Matthew Miner On A Variety Of FCPA Issues (With Commentary)


Yesterday, Deputy Assistant AG Matt Miner delivered this speech.

It touched upon a number of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues including: the DOJ’s Corporate Enforcement Policy, voluntary disclosure, so-called declinations, coordinated resolutions, general compliance issues, and M&A transactions.

This post summarizes the speech and provides certain commentary.

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The FCPA Blog Continues To Muddy The Conversational Waters

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Call me old-fashioned, but I believe that FCPA information sources should strive to make things more clear and not muddy the conversational waters.

Yet, the FCPA Blog seems to have a knack for the later (e.g. sorry FCPA Blog, but Legg Mason did not pay $2.4 million to the SEC, but rather $34.5 million) including its posts on so-called “declinations” which are then frequently flung into the FCPA’s echo chamber.

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What Viable Criminal Charges Against Guralp Systems Did The DOJ Actually “Decline”?


This July 2017 post highlighted the criminal conviction of Heon-Cheol Chi (Chi) of South Korea -“the Director of South Korea’s Earthquake Research Center at the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources (KIGAM) for “laundering bribes that he received from two seismological companies based in California and England through the U.S. banking system.”

The prior post noted that attention now turns to Kinemetrics (the California company) and Guralp Systems Ltd. (the U.K. company).

Recently, the DOJ quitely released this substantively vague so-called declination letter concerning Guralp Systems. However, as highlighted below it is difficult to analyze just what viable criminal charges against Guralp Systems that the DOJ actually “declined” to prosecute.

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