"Active Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Enforcement Focuses on Individuals in September 2008 "
Stephen J. Haedicke and M. Richard Schroeder
Jones Walker E*Bulletin
November 6, 2008

The month of September 2008 was a unique period for Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) enforcement. During this time, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced either the initiation or resolution of five separate FCPA actions, all of them targeting individual defendants. This recent flurry of activity confirms that the DOJ is holding steady on its promise to go after individuals involved in FCPA violations, and not just companies.

The five cases are also remarkable for the diversity of contexts in which the FCPA is becoming a law to reckon with. In the first, the FBI charged that a Virginia physicist offered bribes to Chinese officials to direct $4 million in work on the Chinese space program to a French company, for whom the physicist was acting as an agent. In the second, the DOJ arrested four employees of a private technology company, accusing them of paying $150,000 over nine years to Vietnamese officials in exchange for various types of assistance in securing government contracts. The third case witnessed the guilty plea of former Halliburton officer and director Albert “Jack” Stanley, who confessed to a decade-long conspiracy to pay Nigerian officials some $180 million for engineering and other contracts. Finally, there were two examples of the FCPA’s broad range of penalties: In the first, two former telecommunications executives were sentenced to five years probation, including periods of home confinement and time in a community confinement center, for their roles in a scheme to bribe officials from various African countries. In the second, a 62 year-old assistant to the vice-president of a French telecommunications company was sentenced to 30 months in prison for paying $2.5 million in bribes to Costa Rican officials in exchange for rigging a bid for a $149 million contract.

1. Virginia Physicist Charged with FCPA and Export Control Violations Related to Chinese Space Program

A Virginia physicist has been charged with FCPA violations for assistance he provided to a French company in securing multi-million dollar contracts with the Chinese space program. Read more

2. Four Individuals Charged with FCPA Violations in Vietnam

On September 4, 2008, four individuals and their employer-company were charged with violating the FCPA through a nine-year scheme to bribe Vietnamese officials in exchange for business assistance, including rigging bids and providing confidential information. Read more

3. Former Halliburton Executive Pleads Guilty to Large Scale Bribery in Nigeria

On September 3, 2008, Albert “Jack” Stanley pleaded guilty to paying over $180 million in bribes to Nigerian officials over 13 years in exchange for their help in directing $6 billion in work on the Bonny Island liquefied natural gas terminal to his former company, Kellogg Brown & Root (“KBR”). Read more

4. Two Individuals Sentenced for Their Role in Africa-Based Bribe Scheme

In September 2008, the DOJ announced the sentencing of Steven Ott and Roger Michael Young, two former executives at telecommunications provider ITXC Corporation, for their roles in an African-based bribery scheme. Read more

5. Foreign Investigation Leads to FCPA Conviction Against French National

An investigation that began in Costa Rica has resulted in a guilty plea and prison term for a French national here in the United States. Read more

For more information on the cases above, please contact M. Richard Schroeder or Stephen J. Haedicke.