February 05, 2013

Kevin Shepherd quoted in The American Lawyer on alleged money laundering by the vice president of Equatorial Guinea

2 min

Kevin Shepherd in quoted in the February 2013 issue of The American Lawyer in an article entitled “Little Theodor’s Big Troubles.” The article deals with the alleged money laundering activities of Theodor Obiang Nguema Mangue, the vice president and heir apparent to the president of Equatorial Guinea. The Obiang case is notorious within the U.S. Treasury and the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, which is chaired by Senator Carl Levin, because of perceived abuses of corporate formation activities by U.S. lawyers in that case.

In discussing proposed legislation that would impose anti-money laundering obligations on the legal profession and increase corporate formation transparency, Shepherd stated that “[a]ny anti-money laundering measure needs to fit with American legal tradition. We cannot ignore the bedrock importance of protecting the attorney-client privilege, the confidential attorney-client relationship, and the historic tradition of effective state court regulation of lawyers.” The article then notes that “[a] federal law that may make lawyers snitch on their clients is not what the ABA has in mind.”

The ABA President authorized Shepherd to speak on behalf of the ABA for this article in The American Lawyer. Shepherd chairs the ABA Task Force on Gatekeeper Regulation and the Profession, which was formed to formulate policy proposals on behalf of the ABA on Gatekeeper issues and to represent the ABA, both domestically and internationally, on these issues.