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The Doctrine Of Apparent Progress

SlowProgress

Early in my legal career, an experienced lawyer told me about what he referred to as the “doctrine of apparent progress.”

It goes something like this.

Whether or not you are actually making progress with a client engagement (or other matter), it is important to demonstrate to the client that you are making apparent progress. Thus, the experienced lawyer instructed me, it is important to update the client on any development – no matter how basic or mundane – to make it appear as if you are making progress.

I thought of the “doctrine of apparent progress” upon receiving this recent DOJ press release titled “Justice Department Anticorruption Task Force Launches New Measures to Combat Corruption in Central America.”

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This Week On FCPA Professor

ThisWeekPost

FCPA Professor has been described as “the Wall Street Journal concerning all things FCPA-related,” and “the most authoritative source for those seeking to understand and apply the FCPA.”

Set forth below are the topics discussed this week on FCPA Professor.

As highlighted here, a Swedish appellate court recently affirmed a trial court decision and concluded that a key figure in several FCPA enforcement actions was not a “public official” (even though in the FCPA enforcement actions – which resulted in approximately $1.7 billion in settlements – the U.S. government maintained that the individual was a “foreign official”).

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Swedish Appellate Court Agrees, Karimova Was Not A “Public Official” (The Same Enforcement Theory That The U.S. Largely Used To Secure Approximately $1.7 Billion In FCPA Settlements)

whatdidyousay

This post is related to a prior post from March 2019 regarding the same subject.

In recent years, the U.S. government has secured approximately $1.7 billion in net Foreign Corrupt Practices Act settlement amounts in related FCPA enforcement actions against telecommunications companies VimpelCom, Telia, and most recently MTS. The enforcement actions were largely based on the theory that Gulnara Karimova (the daughter of former Uzbekistan President Islam Karimov) was a “foreign official” under the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions. Like many FCPA enforcement theories, this theory was not subjected to any meaningful judicial scrutiny.

However, in a 2019 criminal prosecution of former Telia executives Tero Kivisaari, Olli Tuohimaa and Lars Nyberg, a Swedish trial court acquitted the defendants because Karimova was not a “public official” under the relevant law.

Earlier this year, a Swedish appellate court affirmed the acquittal and once again concluded that Karimova was not a “public official” under the relevant law.

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Elevate Your FCPA Knowledge And Practical Skills – FCPA Institute Zoom (Oct. 27-29)

FCPA Institute - Zoom

Since 2014, the FCPA Institute has elevated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act knowledge and practical skills of hundreds of professionals from around the world. In the current COVID environment, the traditional two-day in-person FCPA Institute is still not yet feasible.

However, there remains a need for FCPA knowledge and skill development. After the inaugural FCPA Institute – Zoom was offered in November 2020 to a worldwide audience, and another in April 2021 to a worldwide audience, I am pleased to offer another FCPA Institute – Zoom on October 27-29th. The FCPA Institute – Zoom will consist of 9 hours of integrated and cohesive instruction (each day from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. central) led by Professor Koehler, an FCPA expert with FCPA practice and teaching experience.

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This Week On FCPA Professor

ThisWeekPost

FCPA Professor has been described as “the Wall Street Journal concerning all things FCPA-related,” and “the most authoritative source for those seeking to understand and apply the FCPA.”

Set forth below are the topics discussed this week on FCPA Professor.

This post highlights what you need to know from the third quarter.

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