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Brazilian Airline Bribes Brazilian Officials – U.S. Collects Net $38.1 Million In FCPA Enforcement Action

GOL

Yesterday, the DOJ and SEC (see here and here) announced a parallel Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes S.a. (GOL) – an airline headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil with shares traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

The DOJ component involved a criminal information against GOL charging conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions resolved through a deferred prosecution agreement in which the company agreed to pay net $15.3 million. The SEC component involved an administrative order against GOL finding violations of the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal controls provisions pursuant to which the company is expected to pay net $22.8 million.

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Latin America in Flux: Recent Anti-Corruption Developments

latinamerica

Today’s post is from Debevoise attorneys Andrew Levine, Matthew French, and Nestor Almeida. (See here for a version of this post with footnotes).

In recent years – and notwithstanding encouraging windows of progress – economic difficulties, political shifts, and the pandemic’s lingering effects have undercut anti-corruption efforts in Latin America. The fourth annual Capacity to Combat Corruption Index (“CCC Index”), published in June 2022, reflects these recent challenges. Most countries in Latin America experienced declines in their assessed anti-corruption capabilities, with only a few demonstrating stability or improvement.

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The FCPA Repeat Offender Club Welcomes Tenaris

welcome

In 2011, Tenaris S.A. (a company headquartered in Luxembourg with American Depository Receipts listed on the New York Stock Exchange) resolved an approximate $9 million Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action regarding conduct in Uzbekistan (see here for the prior post).

For several years, Tenaris has been under scrutiny for its relationship with Petrobras in Brazil and in October 2016 the company “voluntarily notified” the SEC and DOJ. (See here).

Yesterday, the FCPA Repeat Offender Club welcomed Tenaris to its growing membership as the SEC announced an approximate $78.1 million enforcement action against the company.

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Glencore Resolves An Approximately $443 Million Net FCPA Enforcement Action

glencore

In mid-2018 Glencore (a commodities company incorporated in the United Kingdom and headquartered in Switzerland disclosed that it was under scrutiny by the DOJ. (See here for the prior post).

Specifically, the company disclosed:

“Glencore Ltd, a subsidiary of Glencore plc, has received a subpoena dated 2 July, 2018 from the US Department of Justice to produce documents and other records with respect to compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and United States money laundering statutes.  The requested documents relate to the Glencore Group’s business in Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Venezuela from 2007 to present. Glencore is reviewing the subpoena and will provide further information in due course as appropriate.”

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Stericyle Resolves A Net $59 Million FCPA Enforcement Action

stericle

Stericycle (an Illinois based medical waste disposal company) has been under FCPA scrutiny since mid-2017 (See here).

As highlighted here, approximately two months ago the company disclosed that it had “reached agreements in principle with the DOJ and SEC.” Specifically, Stericycle disclosed:

Yesterday, the DOJ and SEC announced (here and here) a parallel FCPA enforcement action against Stericycle.

The DOJ enforcement action involved this criminal information charging Stericycle with  two counts of conspiracy to violate (1) the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions, and (2) the FCPA’s books and records provision. The criminal charges were resolved via this deferred prosecution agreement pursuant to which Stericycle agreed to pay a net $35 million criminal penalty.

The SEC enforcement action involved this administrative order finding that Stericycle violated the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal controls provisions pursuant to which the company agreed to pay a net approximate $24 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest.

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