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FCPA Flash – A Conversation About Voluntary Disclosure On Both Sides Of The Atlantic

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The FCPA Flash podcast provides in an audio format the same fresh, candid, and informed commentary about the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and related topics as readers have come to expect from written posts on FCPA Professor.

This FCPA Flash episode is a conversation with Keith Rosen and Pamela Reddy (both attorneys with Norton Rose Fulbright, Rosen in Washington, D.C. and Reddy in London). Along with other Norton Rose attorneys, Rosen and Reedy recently authored an article titled “Self-Reporting Bribery: The Ongoing Dilemma” that caught my eye.  During the podcast, Rosen and Reddy highlight voluntary disclosure dynamics on both sides of the Atlantic and whether the enforcement agencies are actually “shooting themselves in the foot (see here, herehere and here for prior posts) when it comes to encouraging voluntary disclosure.

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The DOJ’s Latest FCPA Rhetoric Doesn’t Even Pass The Smell Test

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Speeches by Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement officials have long included over-the-top rhetoric. (See this article for a general summary).

This recent post highlighted a speech by DOJ Deputy Assistant Attorney General Matthew Miner. In the speech, Miner stated that when a company voluntarily discloses FCPA issues and engages in remedial actions, this frees up DOJ resources and “these resources can then be directed to other cases, not only in the FCPA context, but also to other areas such as opioid enforcement, human trafficking, and crimes impacting vulnerable victims, like children and the elderly.”

The DOJ’s latest FCPA rhetoric does not even pass the smell test and set forth below are various reactions to this portion of Miner’s speech from FCPA practitioners.

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Deputy Assistant AG Miner On M&A Issues, The DOJ’s Opinion Procedure Program, And Other Issues (With Rebuttal)

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As highlighted in this prior post, while in private practice Matthew Miner criticized the “Yates Memo,” DOJ transparency, the deficiencies of DOJ guidance as a solution in the FCPA space, and the FCPA’s “foreign official” element.

Now that he is Deputy Assistant Attorney General and – in his words – “wear[ing] a different hat,” Miner largely read from the DOJ’s FCPA script in this speech yesterday.

This post excerpts Miner’s speech and provides various rebuttal points.

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FCPA Flash Podcast – A Conversation With Harold Kim (U.S. Chamber Institute For Legal Reform) On FCPA Enforcement Policy And Reform

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The FCPA Flash podcast provides in an audio format the same fresh, candid, and informed commentary about the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and related topics as readers have come to expect from written posts on FCPA Professor.

This FCPA Flash episode is a conversation with Harold Kim (Executive Vice President, U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform). During the podcast, Kim discusses recent DOJ FCPA enforcement policy developments, the continued viability of an FCPA compliance defenses, as well as the general lack of FCPA policy developments from the SEC.

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A Game Of Cat And Mouse

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The DOJ has long talked about how “greater transparency benefits everyone” (see here).

In this May 2017 speech, a high-ranking DOJ official talked about “the importance of transparency in our anti-corruption prosecutions.”

In this August 2017 speech, a high-ranking DOJ official stated: “We are taking additional steps to enhance our enforcement of the FCPA against both corporate and individual actors, and to promote transparency in doing so.”

In announcing its November 2017 FCPA Corporate Enforcement Policy (see here) the DOJ talked about greater “clarity about our decision-making process” and the “advantage of the policy for businesses is to provide transparency about the benefits available if they satisfy the requirements.”

Against this backdrop, if the DOJ is truly committed to transparency and clarity in the FCPA context, why does it continue to play cat and mouse games with the business community about terms and conditions it uses in describing its own enforcement policies?

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