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Shallow FCPA Commentary

shallow

Certain of what passes for Foreign Corrupt Practices Act commentary is shallow and lacks an appreciation of context and perspective. Another hallmark of shallow FCPA commentary is the logical fallacy post hoc ergo propter hoc (in other words, since event Y followed event X, event Y must have been caused by event X).

Shallow FCPA commentary matters because it spreads misleading information about FCPA enforcement and policy.

The latest shallow commentary was articulated in connection with the recent Credit Suisse enforcement action (see here and here for prior posts).

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

Scrutiny alert, novice FCPA commentary matters, additional charges, survey says, across the pond, and for the reading stack. It’s all here in the Friday roundup.

Scrutiny Alert

Some companies disclose Foreign Corrupt Practices Act very early and then update the disclosure for years. Other companies have different disclosure practices. Global asset management firm Legg Mason Inc. (a company that has not previously disclosed FCPA scrutiny) recently disclosed:

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Panasonic Corp. And Related Entity Resolve $280 Million Avionics Industry FCPA Enforcement Action

panasonic

Yesterday, the DOJ and SEC announced (here and here) a parallel Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against Japan-based Panasonic Corp.  and a U.S. subsidiary Panasonic Avionics Corp. (PAC).

As stated in the enforcement action, Panasonic was an issuer until April 2013 and again “for a brief period between 2015 and 2016 as a result of a share swap that retriggered Panasonic’s obligation to file its financial statements with the SEC.”

As highlighted in this post, the enforcement action consisted of:

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DOJ Announces Individual FCPA And Related Enforcement Action In Connection With Aruba Telecom Scheme

setar

It’s not every day that the DOJ announces a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement casually in a press release about another enforcement action, but that is what the DOJ did today in this release announcing that Egbert Yvan Ferdinand Koolman (a Dutch citizen residing in Miami, Florida who was an official of Servicio di Telecommunicacion di Aruba N.V. (Setar), an instrumentality of the Aruban government) pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering involving FCPA violations.

The release further states: “in connection with the scheme, Lawrence W. Parker, Jr., 42, of Miami, pleaded guilty on Dec. 28, 2017 to one count of conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and to commit wire fraud.  Parker’s sentencing is scheduled for April 30.”

This post summarizes the original source documents in the Parker enforcement action.

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Former Och-Ziff Executive Cohen Criminally Charged – Including For Obstruction And Making False Statements In Connection With DOJ/SEC Investigation

DOJ2

As highlighted in this prior post, in January 2017 former Och-Ziff executives Michael Cohen and Vanja Baros were civilly charged by the SEC with Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and other, violations in connection with the same core conduct as the DOJ and SEC’s September 2016 enforcement action against Och-Ziff.

Recently, the DOJ unsealed criminal charges against Cohen. While some media sources have called the charges “bribery charges,” (see here for the Wall Street Journal article) this is false as Cohen was not charged with any FCPA offenses, but rather various fraud based offenses based on his role as an investment advisor. However, as detailed in this post, Cohen was also charged conspiracy to obstruct justice and making material false statements, charges at least indirectly related to the DOJ’s and SEC’s FCPA inquiry of Och-Ziff.

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