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“FCPA Sanctions: Too Big To Debar?”

Debarment (or lack thereof) is a periodic topic on this site.

Previously, I covered “Siemens … The Year After” (here), a post that highlighted in the year after resolution of the Siemens record-setting December 2008 FCPA matter, the U.S. government continued to do substantial business with the company it charged with engaging in a pattern of bribery “unprecedented in scale and geographic scope.”

In September 2010, I highlighted (here) the FBI’s $40 million contract with BAE – months after the FBI participated in resolution of the $400 million FCPA related enforcement action against the company.

In my November 2010 testimony (here) before the U.S. Senate, I stated as follows. “In order for the DOJ’s deterrence message to be completely heard and understood egregious instances of corporate bribery that legitimately satisfy the elements of an FCPA anti-bribery violation involving high-level executives and/or board participation should be followed with debarment proceedings against the offender.”

This testimony prompted then Senator Arlen Specter (who chaired the hearing) to ask me several follow-up questions for the record relating to debarment. (See here for the Q&A’s). Senator Christopher Coons (who also participated in the November 2010 hearing) also asked debarment follow-up questions of the DOJ.

As highlighted last week (here), the DOJ is opposed to a “mandatory, conduct-based, debarment remedy for companies that engage in egregious bribery.” As noted in the prior post, the DOJ’s responses seemed anchored in self-interest in that such a remedy would lessen its FCPA caseload, would make its job more difficult, and would take away it flexibility and leverage and resolving FCPA enforcement actions.

Enter Dru Stevenson (Professor of Law, South Texas College of Law – here and a past contributor to the site) and Nick Wagoner (a law student at South Texas College of Law).

Stevenson and Wagoner recently released a yet to be published article titled “FCPA Sanctions: Too Big to Debar?” (See here).

The authors (who can be reached at dstevenson@stcl.edu and nicholas.wagoner@gmail.com) provide this article summary.

“Despite the dramatic escalation in corporate fines and imprisonment imposed under the FCPA in recent years, a particularly lethal sanction for combating foreign corruption remains unused—suspension or debarment of prosecuted entities from future contracts with the U.S. Many of the firms caught bribing foreign officials have extensive contracts with a number of domestic federal agencies; meaning debarment may be a particularly devastating penalty both for the government contractor and the agency it transacts business with.

This begs the question: are certain private contractors too big to debar? As this Article demonstrates, it appears so. Certain federal agencies have become highly dependent on a handful of private firms responsible for satisfying the vast majority of government contracts. Because of the potential “collateral consequences” that may result from the collapse of a debarred contractor, these firms have enjoyed bailouts from agency officials who refuse to sanction corrupt practices through suspension or debarment. If ridding foreign markets of corruption truly is a top priority of the U.S., it seems both unfair and imprudent for federal agencies to continue awarding lucrative, multibillion-dollar contracts to firms recently prosecuted for fraudulently obtaining such contracts overseas.

This situation leads to the jaded viewpoint that paying fines when caught bribing foreign officials has “simply become a cost of doing business.” To help illuminate these concerns and lend support to the thesis, this Article examines the third largest FCPA-related enforcement actions to date: the BAE Systems case. On March 1, 2010, BAE Systems paid approximately $400 million in fines for its corrupt practices abroad. In the 365 days that followed however, BAE was awarded U.S. contracts in excess of $58 billion dollars. The U.S.’s refusal to debar BAE because of the risk of “collateral consequences” provides a case study of the benefits and drawbacks to deterring foreign corruption through suspension and debarment. This Article concludes that the U.S. must begin to diversify its portfolio of federal contractors so that prosecutors may leverage the legitimate threat of suspension and debarment to more effectively deter foreign corruption.”

No – The Consistent Answer In DOJ Responses to Senator Questions Regarding FCPA Reform

On November 30, 2010, the Senate Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs (chaired by then Senator Arlen Specter) held a hearing titled “Examining Enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.” (See here for the prior post).

Following the hearing, Senator Christopher Coons and Senator Amy Klobuchar submitted written questions to Greg Andres (DOJ) – one of the witnesses who testified at the hearing.

The DOJ responses are here.

As evident from the DOJ responses, certain of which are highlighted below, the consistent DOJ response to FCPA-related reform proposals is no.

Profiled below are DOJ’s substantive responses to Senator questions regarding mandatory debarment for egregious FCPA violators; a potential FCPA compliance defense; a potential FCPA amnesty program; whether businesses face FCPA uncertainty; whether clarification of the “foreign official” element is needed; and whether the statute’s corporate intent element needs revising.

Mandatory Debarment

Does the DOJ favor a “mandatory, conduct-based, debarment remedy for companies that engage in egregious bribery”?

No.

The DOJ says that such “mandatory debarment would likely be counterproductive, as it would reduce the number of voluntary disclosures and concomitantly limit corporate remediation and the implementation of enhanced compliance programs.”

In a related question, the DOJ adds that “a mandatory conduct-based debarment for companies could well have a negative impact on the Government’s ability to investigate and prosecute transnational corruption effectively.” “Linking mandatory debarment to a criminal resolution would fundamentally alter the incentives of a contractor-company to reach an FCPA resolution because such a resolution would likely lead to the cessation of revenues for a government contractor – a virtual death knell for the contractor-company. Similarly, mandatory debarment would impinge negatively on prosecutorial discretion. If every criminal FCPA resolution were to carry with it mandatory debarment consequences, then prosecutors would lose the necessary flexibility to tailor an appropriate resolution given the facts and circumstances of each individual case.”

Boiled down to one sentence, the DOJ’s opposition to mandatory debarment for egregious FCPA violators seems to be this – it would lessen our FCPA caseload, it would make our jobs more difficult, and it would take away our flexibility and leverage.

This is hardly a convincing argument to the position I articulated at the Senate hearing (see here) that “egregious instances of corporate bribery that legitimately satisfy the elements of an FCPA anti-bribery violation involving high-level executives and/or board participation should be followed with debarment proceedings against the offender.”

As I noted in this previous post, H.R. 5366 (which passed the House in September 2010) is not the answer. However, the issue of mandatory debarment, in certain instances, remains a valid and legitimate issue notwithstanding the DOJ’s responses.

Compliance Defense

Does the DOJ favor exploring a “formal compliance defense” to the FCPA?

No.

The DOJ “opposes the adoption of a formal compliance defense.”

According to the DOJ, it “already considers a company’s compliance efforts in making appropriate prosecutorial decisions, and the United States Sentencing Guidelines also appropriately credits a company’s compliance efforts in any sentencing determination.” “Among other things” the DOJ states, “the creation of such a defense would transform criminal FCPA trials into a battle of experts over whether the company had established a sufficient compliance mechanism.” “Against this backdrop, companies may feel the need to implement a purely paper compliance program that could be defended by an ‘expert,’ even if the measures are not effective in stopping bribery.” “If the FCPA were amended to permit companies to hide behind such programs, it would erect an additional hurdle for prosecutors in what are already difficult and complex cases to prove.”

As readers likely know, the U.K. Bribery Act, set to go live on July 1st, contains a so-called adequate procedures defense and such a defense should be considered under the FCPA as well.

Amending the FCPA to include a compliance defense is not a new idea. In the mid-1980’s numerous FCPA reform bills included such a defense and provided that a company would not be held vicariously liable for a violation of the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions by its employees or agents, who were not an officer or director, if the company established procedures reasonably designed to prevent and detect FCPA violations by employees and agents. In fact, an FCPA reform bill containing such a provision did pass the U.S. House.

A compliance defense is not about hiding behind “paper programs” as the DOJ asserts. Rather a so-called compliance defense, one that would be inapplicable in cases such as Siemens, it is about properly incentivizing corporate FCPA compliance and not putting a company at risk of FCPA scrutiny, costly FCPA internal investigations, and the growing collateral consequences of FCPA inquiries should a non-executive employee engage in conduct contrary to a company’s pre-existing, published, and trained on FCPA compliance policies and procedures.

Amnesty Program

Is the DOJ in favor of a so-called “amnesty program” as recently advocated by some?

No.

The DOJ says it “does not support the idea of an FCPA amnesty program.” Among other things, the DOJ says that “as the beneficiary of [several established sources of information such as voluntary disclosures] the Department does not presently face difficulty in identifying sources of information of FCPA criminal violations.” “Consequently, an amnesty program would provide protection for corporations who violate the law without providing accompanying meaningful benefits to law enforcement.” “Finally, consistent with the United States Sentencing Guidelines and the Department’s Principles of Federal Prosecution of Business Organizations, the Department already provides meaningful credit for voluntary self-disclosures, extraordinary cooperation, and substantial remediation by corporations where appropriate and deserved.”

Uncertainty?

Does the DOJ believe that “well-meaning businesses are faced with significant uncertainty as to their potential exposure to civil and criminal penalties under the FCPA?”

No.

The DOJ says that “it provides clear guidance to companies with respect to FCPA enforcement through a variety of means.” It lists the DOJ’s Lay Person Guide to the FCPA, various charging documents, plea agreements, non-prosecution and deferred prosecution agreements [see here for a recent guest post on prosecutorial common law] and the DOJ’s FCPA Opinion Procedure Releases.

The DOJ concludes its response by saying “in the end, a review of the Department’s FCPA enforcement actions makes clear that companies have never been charged for minor or incidental issues.” “By contrast, the Department’s prosecutions involved extensive and often widespread corruption over significant periods of time.”

As explored in this prior guest post, in the FCPA’s 1988 amendments, Congress directed the DOJ to consider providing formal guidance. However, in 1990 the DOJ declined to issue guidelines and stated as follows. “After consideration of the comments received, and after consultation with the appropriate agencies, the Attorney General has determined that no guidelines are necessary…. [C]ompliance with the [anti-bribery provisions] would not be enhanced nor would the business community be assisted by further clarification of these provisions through the issuance of guidelines.”

“Foreign Official”

Does the DOJ agree that statutory clarification of “foreign official” would help clarify to businesses which of their transactions could be subject to the FCPA?”

No.

The DOJ response begins as follows. “The term ‘foreign official’ has been defined in relevant case law and opinion releases. Some defense attorneys have attempted to argue that the definition of ‘foreign official’ does not extend to the employees of state-owned or state-controlled enterprises.”

For the record, I am not a “defense attorney.” See here for my declaration as to the legislative history on “foreign official.”

In a related question, the DOJ further stated that it “has provided significant guidance regarding the definition of ‘foreign official.'”

Intent

Should the FCPA be amended to “bring the intent standard for corporations in line with the current ‘willfulness” standard that applies to individuals?”

No.

The DOJ responded that it “does not believe that it is necessary or appropriate to amend the FCPA’s intent standard with respect to corporations.” “The Principles of Federal Prosecution of Business Organizations already governs the Department’s decisions regarding whether to charge corporations for federal crimes, including under the FCPA.” “Furthermore, the Department is not prosecuting FCPA matters where a corporation engaged in something less than willful criminal conduct.”

Prosecutorial Common Law

A guest post today from Michael Levy (see here), co-chair of the White Collar Investigations and Enforcement Group at Bingham McCutchen. Levy, a former Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Columbia and law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell Jr., expounds on what he has called “prosecutorial common law” (see here for the recent Corporate Crime Reporter article).

*****

We have seen this movie before, and it ends with the government’s interpretation of a federal criminal statute knocked down, 9-0, by the United States Supreme Court.

Prosecutors don’t set out deliberately to interpret criminal statutes in ways that convict hundreds of people on the basis of a standard that not a single Supreme Court Justice finds supportable, but it has happened already and may well happen again in the context of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act because of a phenomenon I’ve referred to for a number of years as “prosecutorial common law” (see here).

There are no law school classes or scholarly papers on prosecutorial common law, yet it governs, as a practical matter, an enormous amount of the daily life of the criminal justice system in white collar cases. Prosecutorial common law can be thought of as the “common law of settlement.” In areas, such as complex white collar crime, in which prospective defendants either are highly unlikely to challenge the government in court (e.g., corporations) or highly unlikely to have both the fortitude and the personal wealth or strong support of another entity advancing fees to be able to challenge the government thoroughly and completely (e.g., most individuals), almost all cases are settled.

But settling cases creates very different incentives for the two sides. The government has a long-term interest in developing the law because it is charged with enforcing that law not just against the settling party, but also against other parties in the future. Thus, the government has a strong institutional interest in pushing ever more aggressive interpretations of the governing criminal statute. On the other hand, the defendant, whether a corporation or an individual, is not particularly concerned about the scope of the statute as it might be applied to others in the future. The defendant wants the least possible punishment, right now.

So, in many white collar cases, the government pushes hard for the defendant to plead guilty pursuant to expansive interpretations of a statute’s jurisdiction and/or scope of liability, and defendants readily accept those interpretations in exchange for what they perceive to be the lowest available penalty.

But what happens next?

In the absence of much decided case law in the area — because so many defendants strike plea agreements rather than litigating their cases — prosecutors start to believe that the law means whatever they have been able to get defendants to agree to in earlier plea agreements. After all, they reason (ignoring the parties’ different interests in settlements), “Why would Global MegaCorp have agreed to plead guilty on this very same theory of liability if it didn’t believe that (1) we had jurisdiction and (2) the conduct clearly violated the criminal statute?”

And when the next case comes around, the government stretches the theory of liability or jurisdiction a little bit further. Again, nobody sets out to develop a statutory interpretation that goes beyond what any Supreme Court Justice would conclude was intended by Congress, but that is consistently what winds up happening because prosecutors (rather than judges) and settlements (rather than well-reasoned judicial opinions) wind up creating the “common law” that prosecutors use to interpret these statutes.

We have seen this before in connection with the interpretation of the honest services fraud and obstruction of justice statutes, and it is certainly happening today with the FCPA. In the honest services context, prosecutors pressured numerous employees to plead guilty to committing or conspiring to commit honest services fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1346) even though they did not personally benefit from the alleged fraud and, indeed, acted at the direction of their corporation’s management. See, e.g., United States v. Calger, No. 05-286 (S.D. Tex. July 13, 2005). So, for the Department of Justice, honest services fraud clearly prohibited such conduct — after all, people had agreed to go to jail under that theory. It took very well-financed and steadfast individuals — Jeffrey Skilling and Conrad Black — both of whom lost in the trial court and the Court of Appeals, to challenge DOJ’s interpretation all the way to the Supreme Court. And, when the Supreme Court looked at the interpretation DOJ over time had come to take for granted, it ruled 9-0that such an expansive interpretation of the statute would render honest services fraud unconstitutional and emphatically rejected the government’s interpretation.

Likewise, DOJ used its own expansive interpretation of the scope of liability for obstruction of justice under 18 U.S.C. § 1512(b) to put Arthur Andersen out of business and thousands of its employees out of work. Yet, once again, when that statutory interpretation was put to the test of nine Supreme Court Justices — rather than a single, scared defendant willing to settle at almost any cost — all nine Justices flatly rejected the government’s interpretation of the statute.

By now, you see where I’m going with this.

Notwithstanding the Andersen and Skilling warning signs, prosecutorial common law appears to be alive and well and indeed thriving in the FCPA context. For example, the government has persuaded a number of corporations and individuals to admit liability under the FCPA for bribing a foreign official even though that official was not employed by the government but was merely an employee of a company in which the government held a financial interest. United States v. Control Components Inc., No. 09-00162 (C.D. Cal. 2009) (“foreign officials” were employees of state-owned companies in China, South Korea, Malaysia, and the United Arab Emirates); United States v. Lindsey Mfg., No. 10-1031 (A)-AHM (S.D. Tex. 2010) (“foreign officials” were employees of a Mexican state-owned entity); United States v. ABB Inc., No. H-10-664 (S.D. Tex. 2010) (same). In recent years, corporations even have settled FCPA enforcement actions with DOJ and the SEC premised on alleged corrupt payments made to employees of business enterprises that were only minority-owned by a foreign government. See, e.g., United States v. Kellogg Brown & Root LLC, No. H-09-071 (S.D. Tex. 2009); United States v. Alcatel-Lucent, S.A., Crim. No. 10-20907 (S.D. Fla. 2010).

Similarly, DOJ also has used prosecutorial common law to stretch the purported reach of the FCPA’s jurisdiction. For example, a foreign company or person is subject to the antibribery provisions of the FCPA if it causes, directly or through agents, an act in furtherance of the corrupt payment to take place “while in the territory of the United States.” See 15 U.S.C. § 78dd-3(a). Although this section has not yet been interpreted by any court, DOJ has persuaded significant foreign companies to settle FCPA cases on the theory that this provision confers jurisdiction whenever a foreign company or person causes any act to be done within the territory of the United States, by any person acting as that company’s or person’s agent. See United States v. SSI Int’l Far East Ltd., No. 06-CR-398 (D. Or. Oct. 10, 2006) (only link to the United States was a request to approve a wire transfer submitted to an affiliate’s office in Portland, Oregon).

Because the stakes of corporate prosecution are so high, because the abilities of most individuals to challenge the government are so limited, and because DOJ and the SEC want to pursue ever more aggressive interpretations of the scope of both liability and jurisdiction, we see an enormous number of FCPA cases settled on grounds that are mutually beneficial to the government and the particular settling defendants. The defendants get certainty and what they perceive to be a lesser penalty; the government gets a major international corporation or other defendant to agree that the FCPA means what DOJ and the SEC want it to mean — and the government then can point to that agreement when negotiating with the next defendant.

When the government for many years, for almost every prospective defendant, for all practical purposes, uses plea negotiations to develop prosecutorial common law, it erodes the ability of the judiciary to do its job and skews the balance of power in the criminal justice system heavily in favor of prosecutors and away from defendants and the courts. Nevertheless, at some point, at some time, one or more well-funded, steadfast defendants will rise up and aggressively challenge the government’s interpretations of the FCPA. Indeed, some defendants finally are testing DOJ’s interpretation of ‘foreign official’ in the courts. See Motion to Dismiss, United States v. Carson, No. 09-00077-JVS (C.D. Cal. Feb. 21, 2011); Motion to Dismiss, United States v. Lindsey Mfg., No. 10-1031(A)-AHM (S.D. Tex. Feb. 28, 2011); Motion to Dismiss, United States v. O’Shea, No. H-09-629 (S.D. Tex. Mar. 7, 2011). At some point, someone will take one of these statutory or constitutional challenges to the FCPA all the way to the Supreme Court.

We know how this movie will end. We’ve seen it before. The Supreme Court will reject the government’s expansive interpretation of the FCPA. The well-funded indefatigable defendant ultimately will prevail.

But how many other defendants, for how long, will spend how many years in jail or pay how many millions of dollars in fines before that day comes?

DOJ Enforcement of the FCPA – Year in Review

A few weeks ago I ran a SEC FCPA enforcement year in review (here).

Today I highlight facts and figures from the DOJ’s FCPA enforcement program in 2010.

And what it year it had.

As noted in this recent DOJ release, “the Criminal Division’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement involved imposition of $1 billion in penalties in FY 2010, the largest in the history of FCPA enforcement.”

In comparison, in 2000 the DOJ did not bring one FCPA enforcement action. The past decade has thus witnessed a remarkable transformation – not as to the FCPA itself (the statute has not changed since 1998), but as to FCPA enforcement and theories of prosecution both at the DOJ and the SEC.

As the DOJ’s former Assistant Chief for FCPA enforcement candidly stated (here), “the government sees a profitable program, and it’s going to ride that horse until it can’t ride it anymore.”

This post highlights the 16 DOJ corporate FCPA enforcement actions from 2010. Not included are BAE (an enforcement action (see here) in which the DOJ did not even charge FCPA offenses) or Lindsey Manufacturing (see here) given that the company was indicted and thus the enforcement action remains open.

Of the 16 enforcement actions, 6 of the actions were in Panalpina related actions; 2 were the related Bonny Island, Nigeria actions; and 2 were the related Alliance One and Universal actions. Thus, if one looks at unique enforcement actions (the best way to analyze FCPA facts and figures in my opinion), the DOJ broght 9 unique corporate FCPA enforcement actions in 2010.

In the 16 corporate FCPA enforcement actions from 2010, the DOJ brought in $870 million in criminal fines – thrown in the $400 million BAE enforcement action if you insist and the number is $1.27 billion.

Tack on the SEC’s recovery (both civil penalties and disgorgement) in 2010 corporate FCPA enforcement actions of approximately $530 million and one finds $1.8 billion in corporate FCPA fines, penalties and disgorgement in 2010.

DOJ FCPA enforcement in 2010 was both large ($240 million in criminal fines against both Technip and Snamprogetti, $93.6 million in criminal fines against Daimler) and small ($32,000 against Mercator Corporation in the bizarre James Giffen related case involving two snowmobiles, and $1.7 million against RAE Systems).

The numbers present some interesting results.

Despite aggressive DOJ rhetoric and despite the DOJ seeking a sentencing guidelines enhancement applicable to FCPA offenses (see here) in 10 of 12 FCPA enforcement actions where an analysis was possible, the DOJ agreed to a criminal fine below the minimum range suggested by the sentencing guidelines.

In these 10 cases, the average was approximately 25% below the minimum guidelines range and the distribution range was 55% below the minimum guidelines range (Pride International) and 5% below the minimum guidelines range (Panalpina).

The only two corporate FCPA enforcement actions from 2010 where the company paid a criminal fine within the guidelines range were Alliance One (the company voluntarily disclosed and receive a non-prosecution agreement) and Alcatel-Lucent.

[Note – why are only 12 of the 16 enforcement actions included in the above analysis? I excluded Innospec because the company’s claimed inability to pay (but see here) resulted in an invalid fine to guidelines analysis; I excluded Mercator Corp. because the DOJ and the company could not even agree on what guidelines to use; and I excluded Noble Corp. and RAE Systems (both enforcement actions resolved via an NPA) because the DOJ never set forth a guidelines range in the agreement or related documents].

During the November 2010 Senate FCPA hearing (see here) an issue discussed was the general lack of individual DOJ FCPA prosecutions.

How many corporate FCPA enforcement actions involved related individual prosecutions of company employees (not talking agents here such as in Innospec) by the DOJ (recognizing that such prosecutions may be forthcoming in the future)?

Of the 17 corporate DOJ enforcement actions or indictments (Lindsey Manufacturing is back in the mix here) 12 of the 17 enforcement actions (70%) have not involved (at least thus far) DOJ prosecutions of company employees. Included in the 12 enforcement actions are the top 3 from 2010 from a criminal fine perspective: Technip, Snamprogetti, and Daimler.

What about non-prosecution and deferred prosecutions vs. old fashioned law enforcement (i.e., if a company committed a crime the DOJ charged it and if the company did not commit a crime the DOJ did not charge it)?

2010 saw 15 such resolution vehicles (4 NPAs) and (11 DPAs).

As Gibson Dunn highlighted in this recent report, FCPA enforcement actions comprised approximately 50% of all DOJ NPA or DPA agreements.

Among the criticisms noted in the Gibson Dunn report is that “by continually entering DPAs and NPAs, the DOJ can shield its expansive interpretation of important statutes from judicial review.” As to the FCPA the report states, “because FCPA allegations against corporations rarely, if ever, go to trial, and DPAs and NPAs are subject to only minimal judicial scrutiny, the DOJ’s sometimes expansive interpretations of the FCPA is never truly tested.”

Spot on!

As evident from the material below, a typical way for DOJ to resolve corporate FCPA enforcement actions in 2010 was for the parent company to enter into an NPA or DPA and for a subsidiary (usually a foreign subsidiary) to plea to a criminal charge. Daimler, Alliance One, Universal, ABB, Panalpina, Pride International, Royal Dutch Shell, and Alcatel-Lucent all involved such hybrid resolution vehicles.

In the SEC year in review piece, I noted that 97% of the $529,967,294 collected in SEC FCPA enforcement actions in 2010 appears to be in enforcement actions that were voluntarily or otherwise publicly disclosed and not the result of original investigation by either the SEC or DOJ.

What does this number look like for DOJ FCPA enforcement actions in 2010 – recognizing that by disclosure I am talking about voluntary disclosure in the traditional sense (i.e. the company disclosing the conduct at issue to the enforcement agencies) as well as other forms of public disclosure (such as identification in the U.N. Oil for Food Report, the result of a whistleblower complaint to U.S. authorities, the result of prior foreign law enforcement agency investigations, or based on disclosures by other companies)?

Of the $870 million in criminal fines collected by the DOJ in FCPA enforcement actions, 97% would appear to fit this description as well.

Thus, much like the SEC, the DOJ also appears to be a reactive agency when it comes to corporate FCPA enforcement.

Set forth below are facts and figures from each 2010 DOJ corporate FCPA enforcement action.

Innospec (March 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Conspiracy to commit wire fraud and to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions; wire fraud; and FCPA anti-bribery and books and records violations.

Resolution Vehicle: Plea.

Guidelines Range: $101.5 – $203 million.

Penalty: $14.1 million (based on claimed inability to pay).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Yes – three years.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Daimler (March 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Daimler AG (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s books and records provisions and violating the FCPA’s books and records provisions); DaimlerChrysler China Ltd. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions); DaimlerChrysler Automotive Russia SAO (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions); Daimler Export and Trade Finance GmbH (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Daimler AG (deferred prosecution agreement); DaimlerChrysler China Ltd. (deferred prosecution agreement); DaimlerChrysler Automotive Russia SAO (plea); Daimler Export and Trade Finance GmbH (plea).

Guidelines Range: $116 – $232 million.

Penalty: $93.6 million (20% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Yes – three years.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Technip (June 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions.

Resolution Vehicle: Deferred prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: $318.4 – $636.8 Million

Penalty: $240 million (25% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Yes – two years.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Snamprogetti (July 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and aiding and abetting FCPA anti-bribery violations.

Resolution Vehicle: Deferred prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: $300 Million – $600 Million

Penalty: $240 million (20% below the minimum guidelines range)

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Alliance One (August 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Alliance One International AG (conspiracy to violate the FCPA, violations of the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions, and violations of the FCPA’s books and records provisions); Alliance One Tobacco Osh LLC (conspiracy to violate the FCPA, violations of the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and books and records provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Alliance One International Inc. (non-prosecution agreement); Alliance One International AG (plea); Alliance One Tobacco Osh LLC (plea).

Guidelines Range: $8.4 – $16.8 million.

Penalty: $9.45 million.

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Yes – three years.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: Yes.

Universal Corp. (August 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Universal Leaf Tabacos Ltd. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Universal Corporation (non-prosecution agreement); Universal Leaf Tabacos Ltd. (plea).

Guidelines Range: $6.3 – $12.6 million

Penalty: $4.4 million (30% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Yes – three years.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Mercator Corp. (August 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: FCPA anti-bribery violations.

Resolution Vehicle: Plea.

Guidelines Range: The parties disagreed as to whether the 2009 or 2008 guidelines applied. If 2009, $650,000 – $1.3 million; If 2008, $30,000 to $60,000.

Penalty: $32,000.

Disclosure: Unclear.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: Yes (but Giffen pleaded to a misdemeanor tax violation).

ABB Ltd. (September 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: ABB Inc. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions); ABB Ltd. – Jordan (conspiracy to commit wire fraud and to violate the FCPA’s books and records provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: ABB Ltd. (deferred prosecution agreement); ABB Inc. (plea); ABB Ltd. – Jordan (plea).

Guidelines Range: $30.42 – $60.2 million.

Penalty: $19 million (approximately 38% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Company agreed to follow the recommendations of an independent compliance consultant.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: Yes.

Lindsey Manuf. (October 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions.

Resolution Vehicle: N/A

Guidelines Range: N/A

Penalty: N/A

Disclosure: Unclear.

Monitor: N/A

Individuals Charged by DOJ: Yes.

Panalpina (November 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Panalpina World Transport (Holding) Ltd. (conspiracy to violate and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions) ; Panalpina Inc. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s books and records provisions and aiding and abetting certain customers in violating the FCPA books and records provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Panalpina World (deferred prosecution agreement); Panalpina Inc. (plea).

Guidelines Range: 72.8 million to $145.6 million.

Penalty: 70.6 million (approximately 5% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Pride International (November 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Pride International Inc. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions and violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions); Pride Forasol S.A.S. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions, violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions, and aiding and abetting violations of the FCPA’s books and records provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Pride International Inc. (deferred prosecution agreement); Pride Forasol (plea).

Guidelines Range: $72.5 – $145 million.

Penalty: $32.6 million (approximately 55% below the minimum guideline range).

Voluntary Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged: No.

Tidewater (November 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Tidewater Marine International Inc. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions and violating the FCPA’s books and records provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Deferred prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: $10.5 – $21 million.

Penalty: $7.4 million (30% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Transocean (November 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Transocean Inc. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions; violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions; and aiding and abetting FCPA books and record violations).

Resolution Vehicle: Deferred prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: $16.8 – $33.6 million.

Penalty: $13.4 million (20% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Noble Corp. (November 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: N/A

Resolution Vehicle: Non-prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: Not addressed.

Penalty: $2.6 million.

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Royal Dutch Shell (November 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Ltd. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions; aiding and abetting FCPA books and records violations).

Resolution Vehicle: Deferred prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: $34.2 – $68.4 million.

Penalty: $30 million (approximately 15% below the minimum guidelines range).

Disclosure: No.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

RAE Systems (December 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Although a non-prosecution agreement, the agreements states “knowing violations of the FCPA’s books and records and internal controls provisions.”

Resolution Vehicle: Non-prosecution agreement.

Guidelines Range: Not addressed.

Penalty: $1.7 million.

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: No.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: No.

Alcatel-Lucent (December 2010)

See here for the prior analysis and principal allegations.

Charges: Alcatel-Lucent S.A. (FCPA books and records and internal control provisions); Alcatel-Lucent France S.A., Alcatel-Lucent Trade International A.G., and Alcatel Centroamerica S.A. (conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal control provisions).

Resolution Vehicle: Alcatel-Lucent S.A. (deferred prosecution agreement); Alcatel-Lucent France S.A., Alcatel-Lucent Trade International A.G., and Alcatel Centroamerica S.A. pleas.

Guidelines Range: $86.58 – $173.16 million.

Penalty: $92 million.

Disclosure: Yes.

Monitor: Yes – three years.

Individuals Charged by DOJ: Yes.

DOJ, SEC Receive FCPA Training

The Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission enforce the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

It is thus a bit strange that the DOJ and SEC are receiving FCPA training.

Yet, piecing together information from two prominent law firm event calendars (see here and here) that is exactly what is occuring today in Washington D.C. at the SEC headquarters.

Described as a “joint FCPA training program” for the DOJ, SEC, and FBI and the “SEC’s FCPA Boot Camp” the speakers appear to include a who’s who of the FCPA defense bar.

What prompted this training session? What is the full agenda of topics? What type of questions will DOJ and SEC personnel ask?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Inquiring minds may also wonder – is it proper for the DOJ and SEC to receive training from lawyers and law firms that are frequent “adversaries” in FCPA enforcement actions?

The event is not included on the SEC’s event calendar (see here), but DC readers may want to show up at the SEC’s headquarters today and say “I’m here for the FCPA training” to see what happens.

If anyone has information or insight as to this event, please leave a comment.

A few other DOJ / SEC items of interest to pass along.

Make Your Voice Heard

According to this release, the SEC is seeking public comment on various sections of the recently enacted Dodd-Frank financial reform package. The SEC will post all submissions on SEC’s Internet Web site. As noted in the release, “members of the public who wish to submit official comments on particular rulemaking initiatives should submit comments during the official comment period that starts with the notice of the initiative published in the Federal Register.” (emphasis added).

To learn more about Section 922’s whistleblower provisons, see here and here. To learn more about Section 1504’s Resource Extraction Issuer Disclosure provisions see here.

The Revolving Door Continues to Revolve

Some of you, I know, think it is no big deal when a DOJ prosector enforces a law one day and then the next day defends clients against enforcement of that same law.

Others of you, I know, think that this is an important public policy issue worthy of discussion.

Whatever your persuasion, it should be noted that yet another DOJ attorney with FCPA responsibilties has left government service for a private law firm to engage in an FCPA practice.

According to this Main Justice story, Steven Fagell, Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer’s deputy chief of staff, is leaving the DOJ to return to Covington & Burling LLP (Breuer’s previous employer), the firm he worked at prior to joining the DOJ in January 2009. Main Justice reports that “as a member of the Criminal Division’s senior leadership team, Fagell served as a counselor to Breuer and worked on a broad range of issues including the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.” According to Tim Hester, Covington’s managing partner, Fagell is expected to work on FCPA matters at the firm (see here).

For other recent movement betweent the DOJ and the FCPA bar see here, here and here.

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