Justice Department takes steps to stop corporate white collar crime

Justice Department

The Justice Department’s National Security Division (NSD) has taken a number of steps to improve its corporate enforcement program in an effort to hold companies accountable for wrongdoing, deter future misconduct, and protect the American people.

One of the NSD’s most significant changes was the creation of a new position of Chief Counsel for Corporate Enforcement. This position is responsible for overseeing the NSD’s corporate enforcement program and developing new policies and procedures to improve it.

Ian C. Richardson was appointed to the post and Christian J. Nauvel has been named as his deputy. Both attorneys will coordinate and oversee the investigation and prosecution of corporate crime relating to the national security of the United States, according to a news release issued on September 11, 2023.

“In an era of renewed nation-state competition, corporations are on the front lines of the fight to defend our national security,” said Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Olsen. “We have watched with concern as investigations of corporate misconduct increasingly reveal violations of laws that protect the United States.”

“Enforcing the laws that deny our adversaries the benefits of America’s innovation economy and protect technologies that will define the future is core to the National Security Division’s mission,” said Olsen.

When she announced the establishment of these positions in March, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco also said that the National Security Division would add more than 25 prosecutors to investigate sanctions evasion, export control violations, and similar economic crimes.

Richardson previously served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, leading corporate enforcement and national security prosecutions. Notably, he secured the first corporate conviction for supporting foreign terrorist organizations in U.S. v. Lafarge SA and resolved a corporate computer intrusion case in U.S. v. Ticketmaster LLC. In Operation Medusa, he obtained a court order authorizing the FBI-led neutralization of Russian cyber-espionage malware.

Nauvel, prior to joining the National Security Division, was Senior Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division. He also worked as a Trial Attorney in the Criminal Division’s Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section and the National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team (NCET). Nauvel led the prosecution in U.S. v. Huawei, addressing racketeering, sanctions violations, and theft of trade secrets. He investigated and prosecuted financial institutions, such as in U.S. v. Bank Julius Baer, related to the FIFA corruption scheme, and handled sensitive cryptocurrency cases within the NCET.

The NSD has also increased the number of prosecutors and investigators dedicated to the corporate enforcement program. This has allowed the NSD to take on more cases and investigate them more thoroughly.

In addition, the NSD has issued new guidance on corporate compliance programs. This guidance provides companies with more specific information on what is expected of them to prevent and detect corporate wrongdoing.

The NSD has also made it easier for companies to self-report misconduct. This includes creating a new process for companies to self-report and providing them with more leniency if they do so voluntarily.

Finally, the NSD has encouraged companies to cooperate with investigations. This includes providing them with credit for cooperation and waiving or reducing fines if they cooperate fully.

These changes have made the NSD’s corporate enforcement program more effective. Companies are now more likely to self-report misconduct and cooperate with investigations. This has led to more cases being brought and more penalties being imposed.

The NSD’s efforts to improve corporate enforcement are ongoing. The NSD is constantly evaluating the program and making changes to improve it. The NSD is committed to holding companies accountable for wrongdoing and deterring future misconduct.

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