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Novartis Joins The Repeat Offender Club – This Time Paying Approximately $347 Million To Resolve An FCPA Enforcement Action

Novartis

What happens when the Greek, Swiss, and South Korean subsidiaries of a Swiss company engage in improper conduct in Greece, Vietnam and South Korea? Why of course, approximately $345 million flows into the U.S. treasury.

Yesterday, Novartis joined the long and growing list of FCPA repeat offenders as the DOJ and SEC announced (see here and here) a combined approximate $347 million enforcement action. (As highlighted in this prior post, in 2016 Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis coughed up $25 million to resolve a SEC FCPA enforcement action focused on the conduct of its indirect Chinese subsidiaries).

Yesterday’s enforcement action included a DOJ component (in which the company agreed to pay approximately $234 million) and a SEC component (in which the company agreed to pay approximately $113 million).

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The DOJ’s First FCPA DPA Involved Monsanto

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[This post is part of a periodic series regarding “old” FCPA enforcement actions]

In early January 2005, the DOJ used a deferred prosecution agreement for the first time to resolve a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action. The “guinea pig” was Monsanto.

This post highlights the DOJ and parallel SEC enforcement action against the company (aggregate settlement amount of $1.5 million) based on conduct in Indonesia.

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Cardinal Health Resolves $8.8 Million Enforcement Action Based On A Former Entity Maintaining And Operating Marketing Accounts For Certain Customers In China

cardinalhealth

Last Friday the SEC announced that Cardinal Health Inc. agreed to pay $8.8 million to resolve a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action.

The action is based on a Cardinal entity (acquired in 2010 and sold in 2018) maintaining and operating marketing accounts for certain customers in China.

In summary fashion, the SEC order states:

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DOJ “Piles On” Airbus And Other Issues To Consider

piling

Prior posts here and here went in-depth into the recent $294 million Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against Airbus as well as the United Kingdom’s prosecution of the company.

This post continues the analysis by highlighting additional issues to consider.

“Piling On”

As highlighted in this prior post, in 2018 the DOJ announced a non-binding policy discouraging “piling on” by instructing DOJ “components to appropriately coordinate with one another and with other enforcement agencies in imposing multiple penalties on a company in relation to investigations of the same misconduct.”

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Even Though The Jurisdictional Basis For The Action Was “Limited,” Airbus Resolves $294 Million FCPA Enforcement Action In Connection With Broader Global Enforcement Action

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The DOJ recently announced that Airbus (a France-based global provider of civilian and military aircraft) agreed to pay $3.9 billion to resolve foreign bribery, as well as Arms Export Control Act and International Traffic in Arms Regulations, enforcement actions in the U.S., France, and the United Kingdom.

As the DOJ acknowledged, Airbus “is neither a U.S. issuer nor a domestic concern, and the territorial jurisdiction over the corrupt conduct is limited.” As the DOJ further acknowledged, both France and the United Kingdom have a “significantly stronger” jurisdictional basis for resolving related matters.

Nevertheless, a portion of the global settlement amount includes a $294 million Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action. This post summarizes the enforcement action in which the DOJ charged Airbus in this information with conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions and conspiracy to violate the Arms Export Control Act and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

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