The recent and very prominent media coverage of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and money laundering charges brought by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against employees at Direct Access Partners, a New York broker-dealer, and a senior Venezuelan bank officer highlight an important shift in FCPA and anti-bribery enforcement.
One of the most difficult and consequential decisions a company faces when presented with a corruption allegation is the decision whether or not to self-report to the government. On the one hand, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement officials uniformly cite voluntary self-disclosure as one of the most critical elements of the government’s decision to award cooperation credit.
Over the past few years, the US government has taken an expansive view of who qualifies as a “Foreign Official” under the FCPA. A recent DOJ advisory opinion took the position that a member of a royal family did not qualify as a Foreign Official for FCPA purposes, leading to speculation that the government had relaxed its standards of who qualifies under the term. However, as the new FCPA Guidance demonstrates, companies should not assume that the DOJ or the SEC have narrowed their view.
Robertson Park has joined the firm as a partner in its Washington, D.C. office. Mr. Park's arrival is yet another milestone for this prestigious financial services law firm as it continues to attract top litigation and regulatory talent since first opening its doors in 2010.