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Blowing The Whistle On Bribery

whistleb

Professor Juliet Sorensen (Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law) and Northwestern Law students David Hall and Kobby Lartey recently attended the Seventh Conference of States Parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in Vienna, Austria.  See here for more information on the Conference. This post is from David Hall.

This winter marks the 20th anniversary of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s Anti-Bribery Convention. The OECD plans to celebrate this milestone with the release of a new Study on the Detection of Foreign Bribery, examining the different ways of detecting bribery and creating a new set of best practices in investigation and detection. The full study won’t be available until December 12th, but the group previewed the study at this year’s Conference of the States Parties to the UN Convention Against Corruption.

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Bio-Rad Appeals Approximate $11 Million FCPA-Related Civil Verdict In Favor Of Its Former General Counsel

Bio-Rad

As highlighted in this previous post, in November 2014 Bio-Rad agreed to pay $55 million to resolve a parallel DOJ and SEC FCPA enforcement action based on alleged conduct in Russia, Thailand and Vietnam.

As highlighted in this previous post, in May 2015 Sanford Wadler, the former General Counsel and Secretary of Bio-Lab Laboratories, filed a civil complaint against the company and certain executive officers and board members alleging various unfair employment practices including that Wadler was terminated for blowing the whistle on certain potential FCPA issues.

As highlighted in this previous post, Wadler’s claims were fully litigated and in February 2017 a jury awarded Wadler $2.9 million in back pay and stock compensation and $5 million for punitive damages. The district court doubled the compensatory award pursuant to Dodd-Frank for a total award of approximately $11 million.

Recently Bio-Rad filed this appeal in the Ninth Circuit challenging various aspects of the trial court decision.

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FCPA Flash – A Conversation With Kara Brockmeyer (Former Chief Of The SEC’s FCPA Unit)

FCPA Flash

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 Kara Brockmeyer. Earlier this year, Brockmeyer left the SEC where she served as Chief of the SEC’s FCPA Unit since 2011. In the podcast Brockmeyer (currently a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton): looks back at her time as FCPA Unit Chief including what she views as the most significant matters / trends; discusses a few items that, in her view, are not well-understood or appreciated about the SEC’s FCPA enforcement program; explains theories of enforcement regarding the FCPA’s internal controls provisions; and shares insights regarding the SEC’s whistleblower program relevant to the FCPA.

The podcast is a must listen for any FCPA practitioner or compliance professional.

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FCPA Flash Podcast – A Conversation With Richard Grime (Former Assistant Director of SEC Enforcement) Regarding FCPA Enforcement

FCPA Flash

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 podcast episode is a conversation with Richard Grime (Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and former Assistant Director of SEC Enforcement) and is a must listen if you want to hear informed and candid commentary about the current FCPA enforcement landscape from someone who used to enforce the FCPA.

During the podcast, Grime discusses: (i) reasons for the general increase in FCPA enforcement (among the reasons he mentions is “the government has realized this is a money-winner”; (ii) whether FCPA enforcement, including the internal control’s provisions, has been pushed beyond the breaking point (in Grime’s words yes it has and “almost any conduct becomes subject to an enforcement vehicle”); and (iii) whether long, drawn-out FCPA investigations can be avoided.

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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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