Anti-Corruption and FCPA Investigations

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As evidenced by total fines and penalties exceeding the billion-dollar mark and by increasing numbers of executives named, arrested, convicted, and jailed, the upward trajectory of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement is continuing without pause. This is facilitated by increased prosecutorial resources, including specialized FCPA units at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Fraud Section and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Enforcement Division, dedicated agents at the FBI, and new sources and leads provided by bounty-seeking whistleblowers. Indeed, the SEC has approved more than $100 million in such awards. New incentives have been employed to assure company self-reporting, including the DOJ’s pilot program for self-reporting and the cooperation credit “all or nothing” approach of the Yates memo. All these factors ensure the reality that FCPA enforcement will continue at a brisk pace. When complemented by recent enforcement actions of foreign authorities, and even broader anti-corruption statutes like the U.K. Bribery Act of 2011, that reality is even more obvious.

Given the risks inherent in this environment, obtaining advice and counsel from experienced anti-corruption practitioners is critical. At Crowell & Moring, we provide a full range of services to clients confronting potential FCPA issues: compliance counseling, internal investigations, or even the defense of a high-stakes government investigation and litigation, including parallel civil litigation. We strike the right balance between lifelong defense lawyers, former prosecutors, and former enforcement attorneys, assembling an efficient and experienced group of professionals able to assist in any scenario. Our team was named an “FCPA Powerhouse” by Law360, and our lawyers are consistently ranked as leaders in their field by Chambers USA and The Best Lawyers in America. Our team has successfully represented clients for decades in more than 80 countries spanning six continents. We have negotiated multiple declinations and an unprecedented dual non-prosecution agreement from DOJ and SEC on behalf of our corporate clients. On behalf of a corporate executive we obtained a dismissal with prejudice in one of the few FCPA criminal cases to go to verdict. We also obtained dismissals of civil litigation claims, in both class actions and derivative actions, on behalf of our corporate and individual clients.

In addition to our success with government and private plaintiffs, we also have extensive experience with other stakeholders often present in these matters. Whether that includes the board, the audit committee, a special litigation/investigation committee, management, external auditors, lenders, major investors, or a corporate monitor, we understand and appreciate the different interests that exist during these types of matters. We also have a wealth of experience navigating what are often competing demands for information, mitigation, and resolution.

Simply put, when the stakes are highest, we are counsel of choice for numerous multinational corporations and their executives.


Among the most exceptional attributes of our FCPA practice are the depth of experience and credibility of our anti-corruption lawyers. Our lawyers have been honored for their work in leading industry publications, including The National Law Journal and Los Angeles Daily Journal, and they are regularly recognized by clients and peers in publications such as Chambers USA and The Best Lawyers in America, as well as many others. Our team also includes Fellows of the American College of Trial Lawyers.

With a team that includes many former officials in federal law enforcement and regulatory agencies, we understand the government’s priorities and strategies in enforcing the FCPA and related laws. Our lawyers have held key leadership roles in the following agencies, among others:

  • The Department of Justice, including a former assistant chief of the Criminal Division, Fraud Section and one of the original prosecutors on the Enron Task Force, a former Acting U.S. Attorney, and numerous former assistant U.S. attorneys and local prosecutors
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission, including a former Branch Chief, several former counsel, and a senior counsel in the Enforcement Division
  • The U.S. Office of the Independent Counsel, including a former senior associate independent counsel

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Crowell & Moring LLP is an international law firm with offices in the United States, Europe, MENA, and Asia that represents clients in litigation and arbitration, regulatory and policy, and transactional and corporate matters. The firm is internationally recognized for its representation of Fortune 500 companies in high-stakes litigation and government-facing matters, as well as its ongoing commitment to pro bono service and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

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