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Defamation Claim Advances By Former Biomet Argentina Employee Against Zimmer Biomet Holdings

zimmer

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement actions rarely tell the whole story about the facts and circumstances relevant to the underlying action. Thus, it is nice (from the perspective of getting a more complete alleged picture including specific names relevant to an FCPA enforcement action) when civil litigation is filed in connection with an FCPA enforcement action.

Such is the case regarding a recent civil action filed by Alejandro Yeatts, who from 2005 to September 2015 was employed by Biomet Argentina, in which he alleges various tort claims against Zimmer Biomet Holdings. Although the court recently dismissed Yeatts’s intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligent infliction of emotional distress claims, the court denied Zimmer’s motion to dismiss Yeatts’s defamation claim meaning the claim will advance to the next stage in litigation.

This post summarizes Yeatts’s defamation claim and the court’s recent decision (Yeatts v. Zimmer Biomet Holdings, 2017 WL 1375117 (N.D. Ind., Apr. 17, 2017).

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

Selective SEC release, scrutiny alert, from the docket, for the reading stack, for your viewing pleasure, and a survey. It’s all here in the Friday roundup.

Selective SEC Release

Since it was filed in December 2011, this site has closely followed the SEC’s long-standing Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against former Magyar Telekom executives Elek Straub (former Chairman and CEO); Andras Balogh (former Director of Central Strategic Organization); and Tamas Morvai (former Director of Business Development and Acquisitions) with various FCPA and related offenses. (See here for the prior post).

The complaint alleged, in connection with a bribery scheme in Macedonia and Montenegro, that the individuals violated or aided and abetted violations of the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal controls provisions; knowingly circumvented internal controls and falsified books and records; and made false statements to the company’s auditor.

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Government Of Bermuda Sues Lahey Clinic Inc, In U.S. Court, Alleging Various Bribery Related Offenses

lahey

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement by the DOJ/SEC generates much interest.

However, just as interesting (perhaps more interesting because there is actual judicial scrutiny) is civil litigation which touches upon FCPA issues. (This dynamic was discussed in FCPA Ripples).

A most interesting civil case to pass along as the Government of Bermuda recently filed this civil complaint against Lahey Clinic Inc., a non-profit academic medical center incorporated in Massachusetts, alleging various bribery related offenses.

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Fifth Circuit Affirms Dismissal Of “LNG Consultant’s” Due Process Claims Against The U.S. Arising From The Bonny Island, Nigeria FCPA Action

Judicial Decision

It’s not too difficult to reverse engineer the basic facts of a Fifth Circuit opinion issued earlier this week.

In 2008, the DOJ criminally charged Albert Jackson Stanley (the former CEO of KBR Inc.) with conspiracy to violate the FCPA and commit mail and wire fraud in connection with lucrative liquefied natural gas projects at Bonny Island, Nigeria. Various consultants were generically mentioned in the criminal information and a subsequent criminal indictment would reveal that those consultants were Jeffery Tesler and Wojciech Chodan.

The Stanley charging document also mentioned “LNG Consultant” – a citizen of the U.S. and a citizen of Lebanon – who was also involved in the bribery scheme. This individual, referred to as “John Doe” in the Fifth Circuit opinion, filed suit in 2015 against the United States in the Southern District of Texas, asserting that the Government violated his Fifth Amendment due process rights by accusing him of a crime during the course of a criminal proceeding in which he was not named as a defendant. Doe sought a declaratory judgment that his Fifth Amendment rights had been violated, expungement of court records, and other forms of nonmonetary relief.

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

Clayton responds, from the dockets, Bitkower to FCPA Inc., and a student writing competition. It’s all here in the Friday roundup.

Clayton Responds

This previous post highlighted the FCPA portion of the recent confirmation hearing of SEC Chair nominee Jay Clayton. In follow-up written questions, Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) asked: “The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) forbids U.S. companies and their subsidiaries from paying foreign government officials to obtain or retain business. What is your specific plan for enforcement of the FCPA.”

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