The Yacht Equanimity: a Symbol of Corruption?

This month, former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, who served from 2009 to 2018 as Malaysia’s sixth Prime Minister, pleaded not guilty to three new money-laundering charges related to the alleged multibillion-dollar looting of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (“1MDB”), a Kuala Lumpur-based strategic development company that is wholly owned by the Malaysian Ministry of Finance. The scandal and related public furor led to two significant outcomes. First, a historic defeat for Razak’s Barisan Nasional coalition of right-wing and central parties in the 14th Malaysian general election on May 9, 2018. Second, Razak’s arrest by the Malaysian Anticorruption Commission on July 3, 2018.

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DPA Regime a Landmark Change to Singaporean Law

Flag of Singapore

A recent landmark change to Singapore’s criminal justice system providing for Deferred Prosecution Agreements (“DPAs”), or voluntary alternatives to adjudication, should increase corporate accountability for acts of bribery, corruption, and money laundering.

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Does C Plea Mean Corporate Plea?

Many conclude that a C plea means a Corporate Plea. Used infrequently, a C plea restricts discretion of a federal district judge to sentence a criminal defendant. By expressing his concerns about a proposed C plea for a company, one federal judge changed the result. In an article published by the American Health Lawyers Association, Rebecca Worthington and Tom Zeno analyze the case. Additional posts about this case can be found here and here.

Judge Kavanaugh Supports Strong Attorney-Client Privilege

D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge and Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh proves a staunch defender of attorney-client privilege for companies.  In FTC v. Boehringer Ingelheim Pharms., Inc., one of his final opinions before stepping away from casework because of his Supreme Court nomination, Judge Kavanaugh solidified his stance taken in the 2014 case In re Kellogg Brown & Root, Inc. Continue Reading

Amendments to U.S. Rules of Criminal Procedure

The U.S. Supreme Court has adopted three amendments to the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure (“Rules”). They affect Rule 12.4 (Disclosure Statement), Rule 45 (Computing and Extending Time), and Rule 49 (Serving and Filing Papers). The changes do not reflect particularly large shifts in criminal procedure, but attorneys should be aware of them since, as any good litigator knows, a failure to follow proper procedures can severely prejudice a client.

The Court transmitted these amendments to Congress in April. They will take effect on December 1 this year, assuming Congress does not enact legislation that rejects, modifies, or defers the proposed rules. The new Rules will govern in all proceedings commenced after that date, and, “insofar as just and practicable, all proceedings then pending.”

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Compliance Prevents Corporate Casualties in Trade Wars

America and China Confrontation

Tariffs are not the only weapon of retaliation countries may wield in a trade war.  Governments can pressure trade adversaries at the bargaining table by opening other fronts, such as limiting foreign investment, halting drug enforcement cooperation, or, of particular concern to the corporate world, scrutinizing companies doing business within their jurisdictions.  What does this mean?

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Does DOJ Approve Of Your Messaging App?

The Department of Justice released new Enforcement Policy for the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The revisions include a new provision that many believe impairs the use of instant messaging software and other third-party messaging apps by employees. In order to receive a declination and full credit for cooperating with investigators under the Enforcement Policy, U.S. companies must appropriately retain business records by “prohibiting the improper destruction or deletion of business records, including prohibiting employees from using software that generates but does not appropriately retain business records or communications.”

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Fourth Amendment Meets 21st Century

In Carpenter v. United States, the Supreme Court protected cell site location data. Now “the Government must generally obtain a warrant supported by probable cause before acquiring such records.” Read here about the decision and its implications for organizations, particularly technology providers. The article is written by Squire Patton Boggs attorneys Tara Swaminatha, Robin Campbell, Tom Zeno, and Katy Spicer.

 

 

 

South Africa FIC Publishes Financial Crime Typologies

South Africa’s regulator, the Financial Intelligence Centre (“FIC”), oversees receipt and analysis of financial intelligence as well as its dissemination.  FIC recently released a booklet that provides “insight on some of the methods criminals use to abuse the financial system.” The booklet provides nine different case studies, including one about rhinoceros poaching.

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