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The Panama Papers Origins Of The Parker FCPA Enforcement Action

PanamaPapers

This recent post highlighted the DOJ’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against Lawrence Parker in connection with a telecommunications bribery scheme in Aruba in which the DOJ alleged that Servicio di Telecommunicacion di Aruba N.V. (SETAR) was an instrumentality of the Aruban government such that Egbert Yvan Ferdinand Koolman (a product manager at SETAR and alleged bribe recepient) was a “foreign official.”

This post highlights that the likely origin of the FCPA enforcement action against Parker was this March 2017 civil complaint filed in U.S. court by SETAR against Koolman, Parker and several other entities and individuals and how the civil complaint originated with the so-called Panama Papers.

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Court In FCPA-Related Civil Claim – Causation Matters

Judicial Decision

Several prior posts (herehere, here and here) have focused on basic causation issues in connection with many Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement actions.

The lack of causation between an alleged bribe payment and any alleged business obtained or retained may not be a legal defense because the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions prohibit the offer, payment, promise to pay or authorization of the payment of money or anything of value.  Indeed, several FCPA enforcement actions have alleged unsuccessful bribery attempts in which no business was actually obtained or retained.

Nevertheless, causation ought to be relevant when calculating FCPA settlement amounts, specifically disgorgement. However, the prevailing enforcement theory often seems to be that because Company A made improper payments to allegedly obtain or retain Contract A then all of Company A’s net profits associated with Contract A are subject to disgorgement.

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

Elevate, further to the clustering phenomenon, transparency, dismissed, and incomplete. It’s all here in the Friday roundup.

Elevate

Learning a new topic or elevating your knowledge and practical skills in a topic is not just for formal students in formal educational settings. Professionals in the workplace can also benefit from back to “school” experiences.

For professionals in the FCPA space – or wishing to join the FCPA space – the FCPA Institute serves this objective and has “graduated” approximately 200 hundred diverse professionals since its launch in 2014.

The next FCPA Institute will take place in Nashville on May 3-4th. See here to learn more and to register.

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

A home run, quotable, monitors, up north, scrutiny alerts and updates, irksome, and for the reading stack. It’s all here in the Friday roundup.

Home Run

The latest issue of the always informative FCPA Update from Debevoise & Plimpton (released by the way on the opening day of the Major League Baseball season) hits a home run.

The lead article by Paul Berger (former Associate Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division) concerns the recent Elbit Imaging enforcement action (see here for the prior post) and states in pertinent part:

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Maxwell Technologies Becomes A Repeat Offender Of The FCPA’s Books And Records And Internal Controls Provisions

repeatoffender

As highlighted in this previous post, in 2011 Maxwell Technologies (a California-based manufacturer of energy storage and power delivery products) resolved parallel DOJ and SEC Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement actions concerning alleged business conduct in China by agreeing to pay approximately $14 million.

As noted in the previous post, the SEC’s charges included disclosure violations not often seen in FCPA enforcement actions, based on allegations that Maxwell’s bribe payments allowed the company to offset losses and fund product expansions that are now a source of revenue for the company. Specifically the SEC alleged: ““Maxwell greatly depended on the revenue from Maxwell SA’s high-voltage capacitor sales to China in order to help fund Maxwell’s expansion into new product lines that are now expected to become Maxwell’s future source of revenue. Maxwell engaged in the bribery scheme because it enabled the company to obtain material revenue needed to financially position itself to help fund the very products that today are sustaining Maxwell’s future growth.”

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