DOJ Official Proclaims “New Era” of FCPA Enforcement

Morrison & Foerster LLP

Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer, Criminal Division, Department of Justice, announced a “new era of FCPA enforcement” this week.1 He emphasized that DOJ’s aggressive enforcement of the FCPA is “here to stay.”

The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) is a federal law enacted in 1977 to prohibit making payments to foreign officials for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business.2 It applies broadly to U.S. companies and individuals, companies that have issued securities registered in the U.S., employees and agents of U.S. businesses, and foreign nationals and businesses that cause prohibited acts in the U.S.

Speaking at the American Conference Institute’s National Conference on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Mr. Breuer described “historic” growth in FCPA actions during 2010. He concluded with concrete advice to companies operating in the new climate of “vigorous” enforcement.

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