FCPA QUICK FACTS

Attorneys focused on helping clients navigate the FCPA and other anti-corruption measures, including attorneys who formerly served as:

    Assistant U.S. attorneys
    Trial attorneys for the U.S. Department of Justice

    Officials of the SEC's Division of Enforcement

    State Attorney and Assistant Attorneys General

Law360 named Venable a FCPA Powerhouse in 2013

FCPA and Anti-Corruption Group received Main Justice's 2013 Distinguished Service Award

Ranked in U.S. News-Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms," 2012 - 2017

    Tier 1 Criminal Defense: White-Collar (Baltimore; DC)

U.S. News-Best Lawyers "Law Firm of the Year" in Criminal Law: White-Collar Litigation, 2013

 

PRACTICE FOCUS

Compliance

Transactional due diligence

Internal investigations

Defense of organizations and individuals

 

INDUSTRY FOCUS

Agriculture

Automotive

Aviation

Chemical

Defense

Energy

Financial services

Government contracting

Hospitality

Insurance

Life Sciences/Medical Devices

Logistics/Freight Forwarding

Manufacturing

Non-Profit Associations

Petroleum/Petrochemical

Pharmaceutical

Software engineering

Technology

Transportation

Wholesale/Retail

 

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Anti-Corruption

are you exposed to corruption risk?


Vigorous enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) has become a top priority for both the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Recently, both have increased resources dedicated to FCPA enforcement. At the same time, civil and criminal penalties for FCPA violations continue to grow and DOJ has shown an increasing willingness to criminally prosecute individuals for FCPA violations.

In addition, many other nations have enacted and/or have begun to seriously enforce anti-corruption legislation of their own. As such, any business operating in the global marketplace must make the FCPA and anti-corruption an integral part of its business plan.

CHALLENGES IN MAINTAINING FCPA AND ANTI-CORRUPTION COMPLIANCE

FCPA

Our team.

To assist clients in navigating the FCPA and other anti-corruption measures, Venable draws on attorneys from our Investigations/White-Collar and International Trade practices. This team includes:

  • former Assistant United States Attorneys with years of experience in leading international investigations, including FCPA investigations;
  • international trade lawyers who regularly advise corporations on the complex and ever-shifting requirements of the FCPA and other anti-corruption legislation; and
  • former trial and staff attorneys for the DOJ and SEC.

Our team further draws on the vast industry-specific experience of other Venable attorneys who have significant FCPA and anti-corruption experience. Additionally, Venable has long-established relationships with lawyers around the world to assist us in matters of foreign law that might impact FCPA compliance or an international investigation.

Preventing violations.

Firm in the belief that the best legal counsel prevents problems rather than reacts to them, we apply our regulatory know-how and years of experience to design FCPA/anti-corruption compliance programs for companies in the United States and abroad.

With the nuances of each client’s business in mind, we:

  • create policies and procedures that address not only the FCPA, but also major non-U.S. anti-corruption legislations, such as the U.K. Bribery Act, and train employees and agents in the FCPA and other anti-corruption legislation;
  • analyze form documents such as purchase orders and distributorship agreements to decrease the company’s FCPA/anti-corruption exposure;
  • review supply chain operations to identify areas of potential exposure and risk throughout the logistics chain until final receipt and distribution; and
  • design effective protocols to monitor FCPA/anti-corruption compliance.

We also frequently conduct FCPA/anti-corruption pre-transaction due diligence to guard against successor liability and follow-on accounting or disclosure issues that could result in diminution in the value of contracts and other assets.

Venable additionally conducts FCPA/anti-corruption audits and transaction reviews to ensure that an organization's anti-corruption controls and policies are effective. We also conduct due diligence and provide background checks on agents, distributors, consultants, licensees, joint venture and other business partners that could lead to FCPA/anti-corruption liability for a corporation.

We routinely advise clients on the permissibility of specific initiatives and payments, such as travel and entertainment expenses, promotional expenses, charitable contributions and the hosting of educational seminars, among others. In recent years, Venable has provided anti-corruption advice to companies operating in the difficult compliance environment of the Iraq and Afghanistan war zones.

Conducting internal investigations.

Venable attorneys have broad experience conducting FCPA and other international internal investigations. We gather the facts wherever they may be and analyze them with the perspective that comes from having dozens of years of DOJ and SEC experience. Our intimate knowledge of how these agencies conduct investigations enables clients to make sound business judgments in an often fast-moving environment.

We are well-versed in the many potential issues associated with gathering information and interviewing witnesses abroad. To provide accurate and complete information and informed advice on potential actions, we rely on our former federal prosecutors and employ state-of-the-art computer forensics. Thus, our investigations are as close as possible to any investigation that the government would conduct.

At the same time, we understand the stress and disruption an internal investigation can cause for employees and management. Accordingly, we strive to conduct an investigation in a timely manner, sensitive to the corporation’s business needs and with as little disruption to the organization’s day-to-day business as possible.

Defending your company and your people.

Our FCPA team brings dozens of years of experience defending corporations and individuals in federal criminal SEC investigations involving the FCPA and other complex regulatory matters. Our attorneys know well the inner workings of DOJ and the SEC and combine this knowledge with vigorous investigation and advocacy to attempt to prevent charges or negotiate a favorable disposition. Should that not be possible, our FCPA team includes savvy and experienced trial lawyers with hundreds of federal jury trials to their credit.

REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE

From compliance to investigation to defense, a brief sample of Venable's representative FCPA and anti-corruption matters follows.

Compliance.

Guiding clients on compliance and pre-transaction due diligence matters, our team has:

  • Performed FCPA and anti-corruption analysis on potential agents for a U.S. business seeking to invest in an energy project using a third-party entity located in Mexico;
  • Analyzed and advised a large U.S. agricultural company on potential contractual arrangements in South America, developed standard policies and procedures that were implemented in dealing with contractual agents and representatives, provided ongoing advice regarding potential entertainment and charitable giving arrangements;
  • Provided ongoing advice for FCPA concerns to a large multinational petroleum and petrochemicals company on arrangements with global suppliers and sourcing agents, and reviewed and enhanced policies and procedures for contractual agreements for import and export controls compliance and FCPA concerns;
  • Analyzed and advised on FCPA and anti-corruption issues regarding a potential contract between a U.S.-based company and a West African government, including the use of agents in the potential transaction;
  • Provided guidance on FCPA and anti-corruption issues for a non-profit, non-governmental entity, which provides humanitarian services and relief in numerous emerging markets;
  • Reviewed and enhanced corporate policies and procedures, contractual documents and standard terms and conditions for import and export controls compliance and FCPA concerns for a multinational Fortune 100 company in the laboratory services industry;
  • Represented a U.S. software engineering company with global independent sales representatives reviewing and enhancing corporate policies and procedures, contractual documents, and standard terms and conditions for export controls compliance and FCPA concerns;
  • Analyzed and advised on FCPA issues to vet potential business joint venture partners for a U.S. technology solutions company seeking to expand its presence in Asia and the Middle East;
  • Analyzed and advised U.S. company on FCPA issues regarding potential dispute resolution settlement with former independent business partner in Asia;
  • Performed training on FCPA issues and concerns, including entertaining and charitable giving arrangements, for non-U.S. representatives of large multinational company in the laboratory services industry;
  • Analyzed and advised defense contractor on FCPA issues surrounding contracts with African government;
  • Advised defense contractor on FCPA issues surrounding operations in the Middle East and Central Asia war zones;
  • Reviewed and enhanced FCPA and anti-corruption compliance policy and training materials for both employees and agents, as well as reviewed and enhanced agent and vendor contracts, for a multi-national, U.S.-based government contractor with operations in the Middle East and Central Asia;
  • Designed FCPA compliance program and conducted FCPA training for a large not-for-profit corporation with a global business;
  • Analyzed and advised on FCPA issues regarding potential business venture arrangements and contractual agreements for a U.S. outsourcing company seeking to expand its presence in the Middle East;
  • Performed FCPA and anti-corruption analysis for potential business opportunity for a U.S. government contractor in the tactical training and support industry;
  • Performed FCPA and anti-corruption analysis to vet potential business joint venture partners for a U.S. technology solutions company seeking to expand its presence in Asia and the Middle East;
  • Conducted pre-acquisition FCPA due diligence for multi-national healthcare company acquiring a European entity; and
  • Performed FCPA and anti-corruption investigation of potential foreign agents and business partners located in the Middle East for a multi-national, U.S.-based government contractor.

Investigations and Defense.

Regarding investigations and the defense of anti-corruption matters, we have:

  • Conducted an internal investigation and represented a defense contractor before the SEC and Department of Justice regarding allegations of bribing officials of a South American government;
  • Represented an executive of a large multinational insurance corporation before the SEC and Department of Justice on allegations of bribing officials of a Central American government;
  • Represented an individual in an SEC and Department of Justice investigation into allegations that our client facilitated bribery payments to officials of a Central American government;
  • Represented an individual in an SEC and Department of Justice investigation into payments by a South American subsidiary of a U.S. corporation made to government officials in an Asian country;
  • Represented a defense contractor in a Department of Justice criminal FCPA investigation involving the Middle East and Central Asia;
  • Represented major global oil company to investigate allegations related to shareholder derivative actions connected to the Iraqi "oil for food" program;
  • Conducted an internal investigation into FCPA bribery allegations, and successfully defended a civil lawsuit, for a multinational oil company;
  • Represented an executive of an aviation parts company in a criminal grand jury FCPA investigation and prosecution;
  • Represented a defense contractor in an FCPA investigation into allegedly improper payments made by one of its European agents;
  • Conducted an internal investigation into Asian buying agents of large U.S. retailer for FCPA concerns;
  • Conducted an internal investigation for a defense contractor and represented the company in a Department of Justice criminal FCPA investigation involving the Middle East;
  • Represented a senior executive of a large multi-national corporation in an internal investigation and in a Department of Justice criminal investigation surrounding allegedly unlawful payments in West Africa and the former Soviet Union;
  • Represented an executive of a multi-national aerospace company before the Department of Justice regarding allegations of corrupt payments in Asia;
  • Represented the Board of Directors of a defense contractor in a Department of Justice criminal FCPA investigation regarding certain of its Middle East contracts;
  • Represented non-U.S. persons and companies in parallel Congressional and Department of Justice investigations regarding the use of U.S. financial institutions to facilitate payments to government officials in several foreign countries; and
  • Conducted an internal investigation for a multi-national software company regarding suspicious transactions by one of its Asian sales representatives.