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Acting Assistant Attorney General Rabbitt Talks Enforcement Numbers


Earlier this week, Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian Rabbitt delivered this virtual speech at the FCPA’s annual dog and pony show (also know as the American Conference Institute’s FCPA conference).

As highlighted below, in the speech Rabbitt discussed, among other things, “the canard that white-collar enforcement — and FCPA enforcement in particular — has been lackluster during this administration.” As Rabbitt correctly stated: “nothing could be further from the truth.”

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FCPA Flash Podcast – A Conversation With Michael Levy Regarding The SEC’s Internal Controls Theories

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 Michael Levy (Mayer Brown) regarding a statement recently released by various SEC Commissioners questioning certain SEC internal controls enforcement theories. (See here for the prior post). During the podcast, Levy provides the context for the statement; discusses how it is uncommon for an SEC Commissioner (let alone two) to publicly criticize SEC enforcement theories; and how FCPA practitioners, general counsel etc. should react and/or make use of the statement.

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This Is Not How OECD Convention Article 4 Should Work


As highlighted in this prior post, in 2014 Netherlands-based SBM Offshore resolved a $240 million Dutch law enforcement action alleging improper payments to sales agents and foreign government officials in Equatorial Guinea, Angola and Brazil between 2007 through 2011.

As highlighted in this prior post, in 2017 SBM Offshore and its wholly owned U.S. subsidiary, SBM Offshore USA Inc. resolved a $238 million FCPA enforcement action concerning conduct in Brazil, Angola, Equatorial Guinea, Kazakhstan and Iraq.

As highlighted in this prior post, in 2018 SBM Offshore announced a leniency agreement with Brazil law enforcement authorities pursuant to which it agreed to pay over $300 million for conduct occurring in the country.

Earlier this week, SBM Offshore disclosed:

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Trace’s Bribery Risk Matrix Restates The Obvious

captain obvious

Recently Trace International released its Trace Bribery Risk Matrix.

Like other rankings of bribery and corruption, there is nothing per se wrong with the Bribery Risk Matrix. However, as stated several times on these pages (see here and here), I am not sure what these rankings really do (other than generate media coverage for the organization releasing the rankings) given that they generally restate the obvious (hence the picture of “Captain Obvious”).

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“Foreign Official” Status Disputed


In August 2020, the DOJ announced that Jose Luis De Jongh Atencio (De Jongh) “a former official at Citgo Petroleum Corporation, a Houston-based subsidiary of Venezuela’s state-owned and state-controlled energy company Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA)” was criminally charged “for his alleged role in laundering the proceeds of a scheme involving bribes made to corruptly secure business advantages from Citgo and PDVSA.”

In the indictment, the DOJ alleges that De Jongh was a “foreign official.”

Recently, De Jongh’s counsel (Dane Ball – Smyser Kaplan & Veselka LLP) filed a letter to the court stating in pertinent part (certain internal citations omitted):

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