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The Origins Of 2017 Corporate FCPA Enforcement Actions


Yesterday’s post compared corporate FCPA enforcement actions in 2017 to prior years. However, before a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action is announced, scrutiny must first arise.

Today’s post highlights the origins of 2017 corporate enforcement actions. (See here for a similar post highlighting the origins of 2016 corporate enforcement actions).

As highlighted in the post, like prior years, 2017 corporate enforcement actions originated in a variety of ways from voluntary disclosures, to foreign media reporting and foreign law enforcement investigations, to pro-active SEC investigations, to civil litigation.

Voluntary Disclosure (4)


CDM Smith


SBM Offshore

  • The DOJ stated: “the Company did not receive voluntary disclosure credit because, although it voluntarily brought the conduct to the attention of the Fraud Section and to Dutch authorities, the disclosure did not occur for approximately one year and thus was not timely.”

Foreign Media Reporting / Foreign Law Enforcement Investigations (4)


  • The resolution documents state: “In 2015, in response to inquiries from Chilean tax authorities and related news articles in the Chilean press, SQM conducted an internal investigation”


  • The resolution documents state: “The Company did not voluntarily or timely disclose [to the DOJ], as the Company’s disclosures occurred only after media reports first alleging corruption by the Company and the U.K. Serious Fraud Office initiated an inquiry into the Company’s misconduct, and as a result the Company was not eligible for voluntary disclosure credit;


  • The resolution documents state: “In or around September 2012, Swedish public television broadcast a documentary that exposed Telia’s corrupt dealings with the Foreign Official and the Shell Company in Uzbekistan, and caused Telia to initiate an internal investigation. Soon thereafter, the Swedish Prosecution Authority also opened an investigation into Telia’s corrupt dealings in Uzbekistan.”

Keppel Offshore & Marine

  • As stated by the company, its scrutiny began in July 2016 when its former agent in Brazil Zwi Skornick gave testimony “in connection with the ongoing Lava Jato investigations” in Brazil.

Prior FCPA Resolutions (2)

Zimmer Biomet

  • In 2012, Biomet resolved an FCPA enforcement and had post-enforcement action compliance obligations and reporting requirements imposed upon it.


  • In 2012, Orthofix resolved an FCPA enforcement and had post-enforcement action compliance obligations and reporting requirements imposed upon it.

Pro-Active SEC Inquiries (2)


  • The company previously disclosed: “On February 1, 2011, we received a subpoena from the SEC in connection with an investigation under the FCPA, primarily related to a facility in India that we acquired in the Cadbury acquisition.”


  • The company previously disclosed: “On August 28, 2015, we received a subpoena from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, which indicated that it is conducting a formal investigation of Alere.”

Civil Litigation (1)

Las Vegas Sands

  • See here for the prior post regarding the civil complaint filed by Steven Jacobs (the former President of Macau Operations).

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