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Things You Need To Know From May


After a slow start to 2021, things picked up a bit in May in FCPA (and related) land and this post highlights some of the things you need to know.

As highlighted here, the DOJ announced that four individuals were criminally charged in connection with a Bolivian bribery scheme to secure a tear gas contract. Even though the probable cause affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint alleges that certain individuals violated the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions, the criminal complaint only charges all four defendants with money laundering conspiracy – something the DOJ has done in other recent cases (i.e. allege that an individual has violated the FCPA, but not charge FCPA violations).

As highlighted here, the DOJ announced FCPA and related charges in relation to Griffiths Energy International’s bribery scheme involving Chad.

As highlighted here, in connection with the 2018 FCPA enforcement action against Panasonic, the SEC recently announced that a whistleblower was awarded $28 million.

Proving once again that settlement amounts are only one consequence of the overall financial ramifications of FCPA scrutiny and enforcement, Ericsson recently announced that it had reached a $97 million agreement with Nokia to settle a damages claim related to a portion of Ericsson’s 2019 FCPA enforcement action. (See here).

In this FCPA Flash podcast episode, Matthew Galvin (Global Vice President, Ethics & Compliance at AB-InBev) talks about the company’s BrewRight compliance system including: the origins of BrewRight; what BrewRight is; and how it minimizes FCPA (and other) risk. Galvin also discusses whether companies that adopt similar compliance systems should be able to avail themselves of a “compliance defense.”

In this FCPA Flash podcast episode, Douglas Zolkind (Debevoise & Plimpton and previously an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York who prosecuted certain FCPA cases) discusses: (i) his experiences trying FCPA cases including the difference between “FCPA violations” and “FCPA violations that can be proven at trial”; (ii) underappreciated aspects of DOJ FCPA enforcement; (iii) whether the government is vulnerable on some of its FCPA enforcement theories; and (iv) a change to FCPA enforcement.

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