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Editors

Harry Cassin
Publisher and Editor

Andy Spalding
Senior Editor

Jessica Tillipman
Senior Editor

Richard L. Cassin
Editor at Large

Elizabeth K. Spahn
Editor Emeritus

Cody Worthington
Contributing Editor

Julie DiMauro
Contributing Editor

Thomas Fox
Contributing Editor

Marc Alain Bohn
Contributing Editor

Bill Waite
Contributing Editor

Shruti J. Shah
Contributing Editor

Russell A. Stamets
Contributing Editor

Richard Bistrong
Contributing Editor

Eric Carlson
Contributing Editor

Bill Steinman
Contributing Editor

Do internal controls have a fatal flaw?

The name sounds objective and exact — even scientific. The internal controls provisions. But in real life, how do internal controls measure up? Do they work?

To review — the FCPA requires issuers to devise and maintain a system of internal accounting controls sufficient to provide reasonable assurances that all transactions are properly executed and recorded and all assets are accounted for.… Continue Reading

Risk Alert: Are bribes lurking on the balance sheet?

When choosing transactions to test as part of anti-bribery assessments, the usual suspects include expense accounts like consulting, marketing, promotions, commissions, or miscellaneous. Other expense accounts are selected based on the nature of the company’s business, risk factors or descriptions of the account.… Continue Reading

SEC releases final settlement order with Philips

The Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday released its final administrative order against Dutch electronics firm Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. reflecting an out-of-court settlement of FCPA-related allegations.

Philips agreed to pay $4.5 million in the settlement, consisting of disgorgement of $3.1 million and prejudgment interest of $1.4 million.… Continue Reading

Year’s first FCPA enforcement action flies under the radar

In what is thought to be the first FCPA-related enforcement action ever taken against a China-based company, the SEC entered into a joint settlement yesterday with Keyuan Petrochemicals Inc. and its former CFO, Aichun Li, over alleged violations of the books and records and internal controls provisions of the FCPA, and anti-fraud and reporting provisions of other federal securities laws.… Continue Reading

Revisiting the Definition of ‘Declinations’

In a recent post, the FCPA Professor questioned the broad application of the label “declination” to any instance of FCPA scrutiny that does not result in an FCPA enforcement action. 

He offered strong arguments for a more narrow definition of the term as “an instance in which an enforcement agency has concluded that it could bring a case, consistent with its burden of proof as to all necessary elements, yet decides not to pursue the action.” The FCPA Professor concluded that “anything less ought not be termed a ‘declination’” since “it is what the law commands….”

In the abstract, I think the FCPA Professor is right; his proposed definition for declinations represents the ideal.… Continue Reading

Judge Leon rejects SEC, IBM settlement

A federal judge Thursday angrily rejected a proposed 2011 settlement between the SEC and IBM, saying the  company should be required to report all accounting violations and not just FCPA anti-bribery problems.… Continue Reading