• In 2004, the DOJ collected about $11 million in criminal fines. In 2009 and 2010 combined, the DOJ collected nearly $2 billion in criminal fines.

  • The FBI has trained a special investigative unit for FCPA violations.

  • FCPA enforcement officials currently have more than 150 criminal and 80 civil investigations underway.

  • New FCPA whistleblower provisions increase risks.

  • In 2010, 52 individual businesspeople were indicted, sentenced, or convicted and are awaiting sentencing for FCPA violations.

  • Enforcement officials resolved 6 FCPA enforcement actions in 2002. In 2010, they resolved 71.

  • In 2010 alone, five FCPA settlements exceeded $100 million.

  • The amount of FCPA penalties tripled between 2009 and 2010.

  • Individuals are facing significant FCPA fines and jail time for authorizing improper payments.

  • FCPA actions are increasingly brought against small and medium-sized companies as well as high-profile multinational corporations.


What are the potential consequences of a violation?

Anti-Bribery Penalties:

FCPA violations can result in criminal and civil liability for companies and their individual officers, directors, employees, and agents. Companies face fines of up to $2 million per violation and related penalties like debarment from government business. In addition, enforcement officials can obtain multi-million dollar settlements by disgorging profits based on the improper payment. Individuals risk thousands of dollars in criminal and civil fines as well as imprisonment for up to five years per count for criminal violations.

Books and Records Penalties:

Accounting and recordkeeping provisions carry criminal penalties for willful violations of up to $25 million for public companies and $5 million and 20 years in prison for individuals per violation. Significant civil fines also exist for accounting and recordkeeping – up to $100,000 for individuals and $500,000 for corporations.

Other Consequences:

FCPA violations bring other consequences. Companies are often forced to hire government-appointed monitors with intrusive and expensive access to their operations. FCPA enforcement actions can damage corporate reputations and employee morale, and inflict exorbitant legal fees and related costs. Shareholder derivative suits are becoming commonplace. FCPA violations can also damage a company’s negotiating leverage in mergers and acquisitions.

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