FCPA Meeting with Ernst & Young

AmCham organized a session on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) with Ernst & Young on 5th July 2016.   The session was held at the office of Ernst & Young in iLabs, Hitech City, Hyderabad.

 

Mr. Sandeep Baldava, Partner – Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services, conducted an awareness session for AmCham Hyderabad members. He has led many FCPA investigations/reviews for several multinational companies in multiple business sectors, including technology, telecommunications, infrastructure, retail, financial services, and life sciences. He is visiting faculty on the subject of white collar crimes for various federal and state enforcement agencies in India.

 

The interactive session focused on recent developments pertaining to FCPA and key case studies in these areas and what leading multinational organizations are doing in India to address the additional risks posed on account of these recent developments. Members had an opportunity to interact and learn about some leading practices in this area.

 

The global regulators (US SEC and DOJ) are increasing their scrutiny for anti-bribery and FCPA non-compliance by companies with operations in emerging markets like India. In addition to levying penalties, senior officials responsible for operations are being subject to prosecution for failure to protect non-compliance with anti-bribery laws. Recent settlements have reiterated the importance of implementing robust compliance programs by organizations. Organizations have started using anti-corruption data analytics extensively to proactively identify red flags and strengthen detection processes within their operations.

In the recent past, there have been significant changes pertaining to FCPA. A few notable changes include:

  • FCPA enforcement pilot program

The principal goal of this program is to promote greater accountability for individuals and companies that engage in corporate crime by motivating companies to voluntarily self-disclose FCPA-related misconduct, fully cooperate with the fraud section, and, where appropriate, remediate flaws in their controls and compliance programs. This program commenced from 5th April 2016 and is valid for 1 year. Under this scheme, a company can receive reduction in the fines imposed by the DOJ under US Sentencing Guidelines

  • Individual accountability for corporate wrongdoing (Yates Memo)

To be eligible for any cooperation credit, corporations must provide to the department all relevant facts about the individuals involved in corporate misconduct. Both criminal and civil corporate investigations should focus on individuals from the inception of the investigation. These changes were made by the DOJ to maximize the DOJ’s ability to deter misconduct and to hold those who are accountable. In the coming months, the DOJ will be working towards turning these policies into everyday practice.