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Convicted FCPA Felon Ng Ordered To Pay Lawyer $1.9 Million


As highlighted in this prior post, in 2017 a federal jury convicted Ng Lap Seng of two counts of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, one count of paying bribes and gratuities, one count of money laundering and two counts of conspiracy “for his role in a scheme to bribe United Nations ambassadors to obtain support to build a conference center in Macau that would host, among other events, the annual United Nations Global South-South Development Expo.”

In 2018 Seng was sentenced to 48 months in prison and three years of supervised release. In addition, Seng was ordered to pay a $1 million fine, $302, 977 in restitution to the United Nations and the judge also ordered a forfeiture money judgment of $1.5 million. In March 2021, Seng was granted a compassionate release from prison and deported to China.

Recently, in a civil lawsuit brought by the Law Firm of Hugh H. Mo, P.C., Ng was ordered to pay $1.9 million to the firm for services rendered in connection with the FCPA enforcement action. (See 2002 WL 17363951).

The decision, after a bench trial conducted by Judge Alvin Hellerstein (S.D.N.Y) provides a rare glimpse into representing a criminal FCPA defendant and the lawyers and services involved in such a representation.

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Glencore … In Its Own Words


As highlighted here, in May 2022 Glencore (a commodities company incorporated in the United Kingdom and headquartered in Switzerland) resolved a net $443 million FCPA enforcement action.

According to the DOJ: “From at least in or about 2007 up to and including in or about 2018, Glencore, through certain of its employees and agents, while acting on behalf of Glencore, together with its co-conspirators, knowingly and willfully conspired and agreed with others to corruptly provide more than $100 million in payments and other things of value to various intermediaries with the intent that a significant portion of these payments would be used to pay bribes to and for the benefit of foreign officials to secure an improper advantage and to influence those foreign officials in order to obtain or retain business in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Brazil, Venezuela, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.”

A recent sentencing submission by Glencore makes for an interesting read.

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Paper Attempts To Shine A Light Inside The Negotiation Room


Any time an article title contains a word I have never used, don’t know how to pronounce, and have to “look up” to understand its meaning, I am automatically skeptical that the article will provide anything of value. But then again, perhaps my vocabulary is deficient.

Looking up the word “endogeneity” really didn’t even help, but apparently it is a term in econometrics (whatever that term means) that “broadly refers to situations in which an explanatory variable is correlated with the error term.”

Word choice aside, a recent article titled “The Compliance Game: Legal Endogeneity in Anti-Bribery Settlement Negotiations” by Branislav Hock and Elizabeth David-Barrett caught my eye.

The article doesn’t exactly chart new ground. For instance, many of the issues were touched upon in my 2010 article The Facade of FCPA Enforcement and several others have touched upon the same general topics since. Nevertheless, the article attempts to analyze and access what happens during negotiations between counsel and the government leading up to an FCPA (or related) enforcement action.

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One Big Word Salad


Former DOJ “compliance counsel” Hui Chen (currently a consultant at Ropes & Gray’s Insight Lab) was recently interviewed by Corporate Crime Reporter (CCR) on the state of corporate compliance.

Chen’s responses were generally one big word salad.

In and of itself, who really cares.

However, what makes Chen’s responses ironic is that while serving as DOJ “compliance counsel” she (rightfully) criticized the compliance community for the “lack of precision and intellectual rigor” in much compliance writing and commentary (see here for the prior post).

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The Selling Of FCPA Enforcement Officials Is A Disgraceful Practice That Needs To Stop


This is certainly not the first time these pages have addressed this topic, but it keeps on happening, so I will keep on writing about it.

For profit companies that host FCPA conferences are entitled to run their business as they see fit. However, when for profit companies use Foreign Corrupt Practices Act officials at the DOJ, SEC, and other government agencies like commodities that are then marketed and sold to the public, this is where the line needs to be drawn.

It’s a disgraceful practice and it needs to stop. Moreover public officials need to stop allowing themselves to be used as pawns by for profit companies.

A common marketing device the conference companies use in hopes of driving attendance to their paid events is by touting the public officials who will speak at the event.

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