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Government Enforcement Exposed - "The GEE"
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19 Feb 2016 Can the Government Unlock My Cell Phone? Part II: Federal Judge Says “Yes.” Federal Judge Orders Apple to Assist FBI in Unlocking iPhone

  Following up on our recent post exploring the federal government’s efforts to search cell phones, a U.S. magistrate judge recently issued an order requiring Apple Inc. to assist the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in unlocking an iPhone used by Syed Farook, one of the two individuals responsible for the mass shootings in San Bernardino, California.   During the execution of a search warrant of Farook’s vehicle, the FBI recovered a password-locked Apple iPhone 5C. See In re Search of an Apple IPhone Seized During the Execution of a Search Warrant on a Black Lexus IS300, California License Plate 35KGD203, No. 5:15-mj-00451, Dkt. No. 18 (C.D. Cal. Feb. 16, 2016). While the iPhone is actually owned by Farook’s former employer, San Bernardino County, which…

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08 Feb 2016 The “Other Yates Memo:” DOJ to Enhance Workplace Safety Violation Prosecutions by Tacking On More Severe Charges Where Possible

  On Sept. 9, 2015, Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates issued a memo pronouncing the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) reinvigorated strategy to “combat corporate misconduct” by targeting “the individuals who perpetrated the wrongdoing.” The memo became widely known as the “Yates Memo.” However, on Dec. 17, 2015, Yates issued another memo to all 93 U.S. attorneys that largely fell under the radar. While this “Other Yates Memo” has received less attention, it bears significant importance for corporations in patrolling work safety violations.   In the memo, Yates announced the DOJ’s intention to enhance the prosecution of work safety violations to increase deterrence. Work safety violations are typically misdemeanors punishable by a fine of no more than $10,000 and/or imprisonment for no more than six…

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08 Feb 2016 SEC Completes Municipal Underwriter “Enforcement Sweep”

We have previously reported on the SEC’s Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation (MCDC) Initiative, pursuant to which municipal securities issuers and underwriters could obtain favorable settlement terms if they self-reported any instances in which there had been inaccurate statements in a final official statement about continuing disclosure compliance. Last week, the SEC announced that it had completed the municipal underwriter “enforcement sweep” portion of that initiative with the filing of enforcement actions against another 14 underwriters. With the actions filed back in June 2015 and September 2015, this brings the total number of underwriting firms charged to 72, a number which represents, according to Andrew J. Ceresney, Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division, 96 percent market share for municipal underwritings.   In the orders instituting cease…

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04 Feb 2016 Jury Hands Prosecutors First Loss in LIBOR Trials

  Following a four-month jury trial in London, a Southwark Crown Court jury acquitted six defendants of charges including fraud and conspiracy stemming from alleged manipulation of the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). While the acquittal represents a loss for British prosecutors, it does not appear likely to deter future LIBOR prosecutions in the United Kingdom or the United States.   Tasked with prosecuting serious or complex fraud, bribery and corruption crimes in the United Kingdom, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) alleged that Colin Goodman, Danny Wilkinson, Terry Farr, James Gilmour, Noel Cryan, and Darrell Read—all former London-based brokers at financial services firms—conspired to fraudulently manipulate LIBOR rates. LIBOR—the average interest rate at which banks can borrow unsecured funds from one another in the London…

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01 Feb 2016 Can the Government Unlock My Cell Phone? Companies’ Heightened Security Features to Protect Customer Privacy Affects DOJ Investigations

  With contributions from Katie Matsoukas.   As the numbers of highly publicized data breaches have become more prevalent, companies continue to find new ways to secure private customer information. However, as companies become more successful at protecting their customers and reducing their own liability, the government’s ability to extract information on targets of criminal investigations has become more difficult. This tension between personal privacy and the federal government’s desire and ability to access private data during investigations through search warrants has now reached the federal courts.   During the execution of a search warrant on Jun Feng’s (Feng) residence, the government seized a password-locked Apple iPhone 5. See In re Order requiring Apple Inc. to Assist in the Execution of a Search Warrant Issued…

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