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Regulation Clamps Down In Global Battle Against Corruption

Kroll : 21 April, 2010  (New Product)
Kroll's Global Fraud Report focuses on anti-bribery measures being taken across the world and the role being played in the fight against corruption by the USA
The tide has changed in the global fight against corruption, as regulatory agencies take a more aggressive approach to investigating violations and raise the penalties for abuses, according to a new report from global risk consulting company Kroll. The latest edition of the Kroll Global Fraud Report highlights expanded efforts by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) to increase compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), making the United States the clear leader in the global crackdown. Anti-bribery measures in Germany and the United Kingdom are also featured.

"Governments across the globe are starting to aggressively endorse existing legislations and pass new laws aimed at punishing bribery and corruption," said Jeffrey Cramer, a managing director with Kroll's Business Intelligence and Investigations practice and former federal prosecutor who investigated several FCPA cases. "These efforts are just beginning and are clearly here to stay. Companies can longer afford to do business overseas without comprehensive risk analyses and due diligence on their intermediaries and vendors."

The changing US landscape is a particular focus of the Kroll Global Fraud report, which highlights the following enforcement trends:

* Increase in FCPA cases brought by larger teams of investigators and prosecutors, including new specialized FCPA units established by the SEC and FBI
* More aggressive corruption investigations that target both individuals and organizations - including entities large and small, public and private - and incorporate new tactics, such as undercover operations
* Focus on small and mid-sized companies that were once considered under the radar of the DOJ and SEC
* Rise in the number of self-reported FCPA violations, an act looked upon favourably by the DOJ and rewarded with financial incentives; for example, the US Department of the Treasury recently proposed allowing the SEC to triple the financial incentive for whistleblowers to 30 percent of sanctions imposed

Kroll advises organizations with operations in emerging markets that a change in behavior is essential to increasing regulatory compliance. In "How to Survive and Thrive in Corrupt Markets," Andrés Otero, managing director and head of Kroll's Miami office, recommends that companies undertake a thorough risk analysis of their business opportunities. This includes gaining a complete understanding of the business landscape and risks. Otero also encourages organizations to deal with infractions head on by promptly notifying the DOJ if corrupt practices are discovered and coordinating with local teams to adapt behaviour and prevent future violations.

Other topics addressed in the April 2010 edition of the Kroll Global Fraud Report include:

* Intellectual property fraud implications of the new China-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement
* Product alteration in agribusiness
* Bankruptcy fraud in the United States
* New possibilities for assets tracing in light of changes to Hong Kong law
* Benefits of Directors' and Officers' (D&O) liability insurance
* The relationship between public and private sector fraud
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