Avoiding Jail Time: Another Reason to Take HSR Compliance Seriously


An executive of a South Korean company pled guilty on July 2 and agreed to serve five months in a U.S. prison for obstructing justice in connection with a merger investigation conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice. The DOJ had charged the executive with altering documents and directing subordinates to do the same, before submitting them to the government as part of a Hart-Scott-Rodino filing.

The jail term, expected to be imposed at a sentencing hearing in September, the first for falsifying documents submitted an HSR filing, serves as a reminder to companies and executives that the government takes compliance with the HSR Act seriously. Incomplete searches for documents, false statements in HSR filings, and altered documents can all have serious consequences.

[DOJ, FTC, HSR, Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, M&A, criminal]

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