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MoFo: Get ready for more Japan enforcement

While many people don’t know it, a bribery scandal in Japan in 1976 was part of the motivation for the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which was signed into law in the United States on December 19, 1977. 

So begins an Client Alert written by two lawyers from Morrison Foerster, including Charles Duross, who until February was chief of the DOJ’s FCPA Unit.

He and James Hough, head of MOFO’s litigation department in its Tokyo office, said Japan underwent a Phase 3 review by the OECD Working Group on Bribery in 2011.

“This report,” Duross and Hough said, “contained strongly worded criticism of Japan’s lack of enforcement effort and provided a lengthy list of recommendations for Japan to address in future follow.”

What happens now? More enforcement by Japan.

“As one of the world’s largest economies and as a response to such criticism, Japan may well be poised for a new phase of foreign bribery enforcement,” they said.

After signing the Anti-Bribery Convention, Japan enacted implementing legislation outlawing foreign bribery, which came into force on February 15, 1999. But this was just the beginning, not the end. 

Duross and Hough also talked about proactive measures that international groups, U.S. authorities and Japanese officials will be looking for as indicia of corporate measures to prevent, detect and eradicate foreign bribery through proper internal controls.

The Client Alert can be found here.


Julie DiMauro is the executive editor of FCPA Blog and can be reached here.

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