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In Terms Of Settlement Amounts, 2019 FCPA Enforcement Has Set An All-Time Record

record breaker

The previous Foreign Corrupt Practices Act record in terms of settlement amounts was 2016 in which the DOJ and SEC collected approximately $2.4 billion (see here).

With last week’s record-setting $1.06 billion enforcement action against Ericsson (see here), 2019 has eclipsed 2016. With approximately three weeks left in 2019 (keep in mind the end of the calendar year has historically been an active period for FCPA enforcement), the DOJ and SEC have collected approximately $2.65 billion in settlement amounts in 14 core corporate actions this year.

Granted, the $1.06 billion Ericsson matter and the $850 million MTS matter (see here for the prior post) account for approximately 70% of the overall $2.65 billion figure. But then again, as the below chart demonstrates in most prior years just a few enforcement actions tend to skew FCPA enforcement statistics.

The below chart provides a summary of corporate FCPA enforcement data (DOJ and SEC combined) for the years 2007-2019 (at present), as well as notable circumstances that significantly skewed enforcement data statistics for particular years.

Corporate FCPA Enforcement Actions (2007 – 2019)

Year Core Actions Settlement Amounts Of Note
2019 (YTD) 14 $2.65 billion Two enforcement actions (Ericsson and MTS) comprise approximately 70% of the 2.65 billion amount
2018 17 $1 billion Three enforcement actions (Panasonic, Societe General and Petrobras) comprised approximately 75% of the $1 billion amount.
2017 13 $1.1 billion Two enforcement actions (Telia and SBM Offshore) comprised approximately 65% of the $1.13 billion amount and four enforcement actions (the two mentioned above plus Rolls-Royce and Keppel Offshore & Marine) comprised approximately 88% of the amount.
2016 27 $2.4 billion Three enforcement actions (Teva, Odebrecht/Braskem and VimpelCom) comprised approximately 56% of the $2.41 billion amount and five enforcement actions (the three mentioned above plus JP Morgan and Embraer) comprised approximately 72% of the amount.
2015 11 $139 million No enforcement actions significantly skewed the statistics.
2014 10 $1.6 billion Two enforcement actions (Alstom – $772 million and Alcoa – $384 million) comprised approximately 72% of the $1.6 billion amount.
2013 9 $720 million The $398 million Total enforcement action comprised approximately 55% of the $720 million amount.
2012 12 $260 million No enforcement actions significantly skewed the statistics.
2011 16 $503 million The $219 million JGC Corp. enforcement action involved Bonny Island conduct and comprised approximately 44% of the $503 million amount
2010 21 $1.4 billion Six enforcement actions, all resolved on the same day, involved various oil and gas companies’ use of Panalpina in Nigeria. Panalpina also resolved an enforcement action on the same day.

Two enforcement actions (Technip and Eni / Snamprogetti) involved Bonny Island conduct.

In other words, there were 14 unique corporate enforcement actions in 2010. Of further note, the two Bonny Island enforcement actions, Technip($338 million) and Eni/Snamprogetti ($365 million) comprised approximately 50% of the $1.4 billion amount.

2009 11 $645 million The $579 million KBR / Halliburton Bonny Island, Nigeria enforcement action comprised approximately 90% of the $645 million amount.
2008 10 $885 million The $800 million Siemens enforcement action comprised approximately 90% of the $885 million amount.
2007 15 $149 million Six enforcement actions involved Iraq Oil for Food conduct and these enforcement actions comprised 40% of all enforcement actions and approximately 50% of the $149 million amount.
TOTALS 186 $13.6 billion

*After accounting for various credits or deductions in certain enforcement actions for related foreign law enforcement actions

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