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Government Enforcement Exposed - "The GEE"
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02 Jan 2015 Year in Review: Government Enforcement/Financial Litigation Developments

This year we have seen a number of interesting and important developments in the world of government enforcement and financial/regulatory litigation. Here are our “Top 5:”   Wal-Mart permits the discovery of privileged internal investigation documents   As we discussed in August, the Wal-Mart decision out of the Delaware Supreme Court was significant because it made clear that the attorney-client and work product privileges are not impenetrable when it comes to internal investigations – at least not in Delaware. The Court, in formally adopting the Garner Doctrine, found that even when all parties agree that the privileges exist and apply, the privileges may be overcome and shareholders may be entitled to privileged documents if they can show “good cause.” While the decision was important and…

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13 Mar 2014 Top 10 Takeaways from ABA White Collar Crime Conference 2014 (Part 2 of 2)

By Kathleen Matsoukas |   This is the second part of a two-part blog post. Part 1 can be accessed here: “Top 10 Takeaways from ABA White Collar Crime Conference 2014 (Part 1 of 2)”   6. Search warrants are being used in white collar cases more frequently than ever before. The task of educating a client what to do in the event of a government search warrant may be an uncomfortable one.  However, the willingness of the DOJ and SEC to use search warrants in white collar cases (and the fact that the government is not, as yet, obligated to use a “least intrusive alternative” approach) means that companies must have procedures in place in the rare event that the government does show up…

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12 Mar 2014 Top 10 Takeaways from ABA White Collar Crime Conference 2014 (Part 1 of 2)

By Kathleen Matsoukas |   Last week’s annual American Bar Association White Collar Crime conference offered helpful glimpses into some emerging issues and recent trends in government enforcement both at home and abroad.  Today and tomorrow, we feature the Top Ten takeaways from the conference for individuals, companies, and white collar practitioners as compiled by our partners in attendance.    1. The Department of Justice’s FCPA Unit is alive and well and plans to aggressively enforce the FCPA in 2014. Patrick Stokes, the new Chief of the DOJ’s FCPA unit, stated that he expects a number of “significant corporate resolutions” in 2014 and that the FCPA unit expects an increased budget in 2014.  He emphasized that the unit is working closely with foreign jurisdictions in order…

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11 Mar 2014 SEC’s New Priorities Continue to Come into Focus: Admissions of Liability

By Jacob P. Zipfel |   Since taking the reins of the SEC in April 2013, SEC Chair Mary Jo White has shifted SEC enforcement policy in several areas: pursuing violations of all sizes—including small ones, increasing the SEC’s use of technology to find and prevent fraud in the market, and requiring an admission of liability in order to settle certain cases, the focus of this post.   Prior to 2013, the SEC as a matter of policy permitted companies and individuals to settle charges without admitting or denying liability. This policy typically benefitted both sides, strongly incentivizing settlement. Among other things, the policy enabled a defendant to avoid the exposure to private litigation that often resulted from an admission of liability. For its part,…

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13 Feb 2014 The CFTC: Armed and Dangerous

By Trace Schmeltz |   Matt Taibbi, a well-respected journalist who covers the commodities world, recently remarked about the commodities market that, “Certain people always win and certain people always lose.”  “How Markets Are Rigged Against You,” CBC Business News, Dec. 9, 2013.   Matt was referring to a variety of phenomena, including several recent high profile cases involving allegations that large banks have rigged the LIBOR market, the currency market, and even the metals market.  See, e.g., “Goldman Sachs Creating Artificial Shortages of Metals Rigging.”  Real or perceived market manipulation threatens the commodities markets—threatening the very fabric of an American capitalism that is largely based on our access to grains, oil, metals, and other valuable commodities.   Recently, Congress has provided the Commodity Futures…

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31 Jan 2014 Securities Regulators’ Increasing Use of Real-Time Monitoring Systems – Is Skynet Next?

By Anne DePrez |   While the Department of Health and Human Services may have become jaded in the past few months about computer programs, the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has not been scared off from computers. It is instead dramatically expanding its use of computer-based tools to assist in their enforcement activities.   First it was the Accounting Quality Model (“AQM”), announced at the end of 2012.  AQM (or “Robocop” to some) rummages through the SEC EDGAR XBRL filings of more than 8000 registrants to spot red flags that might indicate questionable accrual, reserving and other accounting practices.  This information will be particularly useful for the newly-formed Financial Reporting and Audit Task force which is focusing on disclosure issues.   Then, earlier this month,…

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18 Jan 2014 Welcome to The GEE Blog

Do you ever want to know what the government is doing and why? Interested in knowing why that manufacturing plant down the street seems to be doing the same things you are without any intervention by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)? Whether or not you are subject to liability for how you coded your Medicare reimbursement request—even if it was an honest human error? Why the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a subpoena to you for your profitable trading? The Government Enforcement Exposed Blog (“The GEE Blog”) could be the forum for you!   The GEE Blog aims to give you the “who, what, when, where and why” of government (or the “G”) enforcement. Our lawyers regularly try cases against the government, both civilly…

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