Government Investigations

News & Analysis as of

Is Chinese Investment in the U.S. Film and Entertainment Industry the Next Area of CFIUS Scrutiny?

U.S. lawmakers recently submitted a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) raising concerns about increased Chinese investments in the U.S. film and entertainment industry and questioning whether the Committee...more

Criminal consequences of the use of leaked data by tax authorities

Leaks of confidential information are becoming more common. Businesses and individuals may face scrutiny by investigative agencies following leaks of information from third parties or by employees. Businesses in particular...more

Investigators Continue to Scrutinize Climate Change Disclosures

Critics Claim “Intimidation” - Earlier this month, on September 14, 2016, feuding parties gathered before the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology to address the legitimacy of subpoenas sent to the New York...more

Hawaii Labor Department Imposes Massive Penalties, Sends Clear Message to Employers

Taking advantage of a new law that substantially increases penalties, the Wage Standards Division of the Hawaii State Department of Labor & Industrial Relations (“DLIR”) has issued penalties totaling $767,095 to a...more

OSHA Joins the SEC in Attacking Confidentiality and Other Provisions in Private Settlement Agreements

On September 15, 2016, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released new policy guidelines for its review of private settlement agreements presented to the agency for approval in whistleblowing...more

Your daily dose of financial news - The Brief – 9.20.16

The hits just keep on coming for Wells Fargo, who now is facing questions about its failure to prime the market for news of its $185 million SEC settlement earlier this month. The main concern with that tack is that Wells...more

SEC Sues Company and its GC/CCO for Failure to Disclose and Accrue Charge for a Pending DOJ Investigation

On September 9, 2016, the SEC filed a complaint against RPM International Inc. (“RPM”) and the company’s General Counsel/CCO. The SEC claims the company filed false and misleading SEC filings that failed to disclose any loss...more

N.C. Industrial Commission and U.S. Department of Labor Team Up to Address Worker Misclassification

On August 31, 2016, the North Carolina Industrial Commission, Employee Classification Section (the “Section”) and the Wage and Hour Division of the United States Department of Labor (the “WHD”) entered into a Memorandum of...more

SEC Fines Company for Agreements Restricting Whistleblowers

The SEC has fined an Atlanta company $265,000 for using various severance agreements restricting whistleblower activities. The Dodd-Frank Act added ’34 Act § 21F encouraging whistleblower programs. The SEC adopted Rule...more

The Fifth Circuit Rules Findings from SEC Civil Investigation are Admissible Evidence at Trial

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals appears to have handed white collar defendants a new tool for trial. In United States v. Gluk, — F.3d —-, 2016 WL 4150901 (5th Cir. Aug. 4, 2016), the court held that a little-noticed...more

State aid – the European Commission charges forward

This note provides an update on the EU state aid decisions and aims to put recent developments in context. We review the current state of the state aid investigations, provide some political context, touch on the US...more

How to Respond to Government Subpoenas and Document Requests That Ask for Personal Information

Federal and state agencies traditionally obtain information for law enforcement purposes using a variety of methods including... ...more

Don't be fooled - Australian anti-bribery and corruption laws exist

Australian companies and their employees shouldn't think, based on recent press reports, that Australia doesn't already have serious anti-bribery and corruption laws. Australia's anti-bribery and corruption laws apply both...more

Byron Burger: A cautionary tale?

Popular “posh” burger chain Byron Burger has been at the centre of a media flurry, as 35 members of its staff were rounded up and arrested in a controversial immigration sting. The controversy largely relates to Byron’s...more

Government Investigations - How to Respond to a Search Warrant: 10 Practical Steps [Video]

In a highly regulated industry such as health care, it’s not uncommon to be the subject of a government investigation. In-house counsel and leadership must be prepared in advance for the possibility of a search warrant being...more

The New York Attorney General’s Crackdown on Non-Compete Agreements: What It Means for Companies

Background - Recently, the NYAG has turned quite a few heads by entering into a new legal arena: challenging non-compete agreements between companies and their employees. The NYAG settled two investigations brought...more

Naughty Secrets – Findings in the Ashley Madison Breach

A quote attributed to FBI Director Robert Mueller is, “There are only two types of companies: those that have been hacked and those that will be”. The assessment of the Ashley Madison cyber-attack has lessons for all...more

The Lawyers' Lawyer Newsletter - Recent Developments in Risk Management - August 2016

Joint Clients — Confidentiality — Right to See Clients' File - New York State Bar Association Committee on Professional Ethics Opinion 1070 (10/9/15) - Risk Management Issue: In a joint client representation, if one...more

Pressure Builds for EPA and CFTC to Investigate Manipulation in the RIN Markets

In what could foreshadow even further scrutiny of trading activities in the Renewable Identification Number (RIN) market, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) has asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the...more

Navigating the new landscape of government investigations: key points

As businesses expand their operations into new markets across continents and hemispheres, they are encountering a host of issues in addition to the complexities that go along with entering any new jurisdiction. Established...more

FERC Civil Penalties May Be Subject to Full Judicial Review

A Federal District Court recently held that a proposed civil penalty assessed by FERC was subject to a full trial de novo where the respondent elects to forego a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge, a matter of first...more

The Real Value of Lawyers to Compliance

The legal profession is transforming itself, especially in the area of compliance. Lawyers are an invaluable part of a compliance program. They provide important perspective and understanding of risk, they help a company to...more

Red Flags Squelch Corrupt PDVSA Deal

As the Petrobras corruption scandal seems to be going strong, we turn our attention to what may be the most corrupt of all the national energy companies, the Venezuelan state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA)....more

Government Raids in Korea: What You Should Do When Faced with One

An on-site raid for evidence is a common tool for Korea’s enforcement authorities – particularly when the public prosecutor’s offices are taking the lead in high profile cases. This may surprise practitioners with US...more

SEC Affirms Denial of Bounties to Three Purported Whistleblowers

On July 19, 2016, the SEC issued an order upholding the SEC Claims Review Staff’s (“CRS”) Preliminary Determination denying three claims for whistleblower awards. The SEC’s order explains how the claimants’ bounty requests...more

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