Publications

05.23.16 | Articles

Accessing Records With Bank of Nova Scotia Summonses

New York Law Journal

In a recent interview, Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline D. Ciraolo described the Tax Division’s continuing pursuit of individuals believed to have evaded their U.S. tax obligations through offshore accounts. Among other things, Ms. Ciraolo noted that, in the wake of the DOJ’s Swiss Bank Program, the Tax Division’s civil trial attorneys were seeking to enforce Bank of Nova Scotia summonses served on U.S branches of foreign banks. This article discusses the authority supporting the use of such summonses to avoid foreign bank secrecy laws and the implications of so-called Bank of Nova Scotia summonses looking forward.

Related Lawyers: Jeremy H. Temkin

05.10.16 | Articles

When Do Business Negotiations Cross the Line and Become Fraud?

New York Law Journal

The mail, wire and securities fraud statutes have a wide but not unlimited reach. An area of particular controversy is the application of these statutes to arm’s length business negotiations. In this article, we discuss several recent appellate decisions in which business negotiations have given rise to criminal fraud charges, and suggest that the line between acceptable negotiation and fraud warrants further judicial clarification.

Related Lawyers: Elkan Abramowitz, Jonathan S. Sack

05.06.16 | Blog Posts

FCPA Pilot Program: Missing the Big Picture

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

For decades, the government has been trying to incentivize companies to self-report illegal activity by dangling the carrot of reduced punishment. The Justice Department’s one-year Foreign Corrupt Practices Act “pilot program,” announced on April 5, 2016, is the latest iteration of this enforcement technique. Although a valiant effort to formalize a practice known to white collar practitioners, the program does not address some of the more significant variables that are of importance to corporate decision makers. [...]

Related Lawyers: Robert J. Anello

04.20.16 | Articles

Service of Process by Email on Defendants Located Outside the U.S.

New York Law Journal

A plaintiff seeking to serve a defendant located overseas can face substantial, sometimes insurmountable logistical challenges. In this article, we discuss several recent Southern District of New York decisions in which plaintiffs, frustrated by elusive defendants or uncooperative foreign governments, have been permitted to serve defendants through email under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(f)(3).

Related Lawyers: Edward M. Spiro, Judith L. Mogul

04.14.16 | Blog Posts

Ransomware, Cyberattacks, and Hacking in the Health Care Industry: Lessons from a Letter to the FBI

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

The last several weeks have brought a host of alarming revelations regarding the vulnerability of some of the most confidential data that corporations and legal entities maintain on their servers. Most notably, the story of the so-called “Panama Papers” continues to attract substantial media attention, as the theft of approximately 2.6 terabytes of data from the Panamaian law firm Mossack Fonseca, and its disclosure to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, has already caused the resignation of one international leader and threaten the fates of several more. Perhaps less provocative, but no less significant, is a recent Wall Street Journal article reporting that hackers illegally accessed the computer networks at some of the most respected and prestigious law firms in the United States, apparently for the purpose of stealing confidential information that in turn can facilitate insider trading. [...]

Related Lawyers: Robert M. Radick

04.06.16 | Articles

Rise of ABA Task Force’s ‘Shadow Sentencing Guidelines’

New York Law Journal

Because the federal sentencing guidelines applicable to fraud cases are widely acknowledged to be broken and dysfunctional, particularly in high-loss cases, sentencing judges may increasingly seek other sources to help guide their discretion. In this article, we discuss the thoughtful alternative framework offered by a blue-ribbon panel of judges, law professors and practitioners, and highlight recent court decisions applying those “shadow guidelines.”

Related Lawyers: Richard F. Albert, Robert J. Anello

04.05.16 | Blog Posts

Why Do Federal Agents Still Take Interview Notes by Hand?

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

Anyone who has attended a law school lecture in the last decade knows this sight: row after row of students typing on laptops, each taking down a nearly verbatim transcript. At the same time, anyone who has attended a witness interview—a proffer—in a federal criminal investigation in the last decade knows this sight: a group of Assistant U.S. Attorneys and law enforcement agents, all asking questions, while a single agent takes down occasional notes by hand on a yellow pad. Student notes can impact grades; agent notes can put people in jail. Yet the typed student notes will almost invariably be more complete than the handwritten agent notes. Why are law students taking better notes than federal agents? [...]

Related Lawyers: Brian A. Jacobs

03.28.16 | Blog Posts

Charging Too Many Counts Hurts Prosecutions

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

In a recent criminal case in New York County in which I was involved, the District Attorney’s Office charged one of the defendants with 106 counts – 105 felonies and one misdemeanor (two other defendants were charged with over 100 counts each). The case was a complex fraud case and the prosecution charged violations of five different statutes: (1) scheme to defraud in the first degree (one count), (2) grand larceny in the first degree (15 counts), (3) falsifying business records in the first degree (88 counts), (4) the Martin Act (the New York securities fraud statute) (one count), and (5) conspiracy in the fifth degree (one count – a misdemeanor). [...]

Related Lawyers: Lawrence S. Bader

03.23.16 | Articles

DOJ Tax Division Today: Interview With Acting Assistant Attorney General

New York Law Journal

Early last year, after almost two decades in private practice, Caroline Ciraolo joined the Tax Division of the Department of Justice, and she has served as the Acting Assistant Attorney General since February 25, 2015. In that capacity, she leads the DOJ’s civil and criminal tax enforcement efforts. In this article, Ms. Ciraolo discusses the DOJ’s Swiss Bank Program, the Tax Division’s commitment to offshore enforcement and its challenges going forward.

Related Lawyers: Jeremy H. Temkin

03.02.16 | Articles

Justice Scalia’s Approach to Textualism in White-Collar Law

New York Law Journal

The late Justice Antonin Scalia was the leading expositor of textualist methodology over the last several decades. Whatever one’s view of textualism and of Justice Scalia, every judge and lawyer (for the government and the defense) must now reckon with the precise language of the statute at issue and be prepared to analyze the relevant words of the statute in context. In light of Justice Scalia’s recent death and the ongoing debate over his judicial philosophy, this article reflects upon the Justice’s influence on the interpretation of white-collar statutes and highlights the significant impact of his textualist approach.

Related Lawyers: Elkan Abramowitz, Jonathan S. Sack

02.18.16 | Articles

A Smaller World, but Personal Jurisdiction Still Matters

New York Law Journal

When the Supreme Court decided Daimler AG v. Bauman two years ago, it effectively re-wrote the rules on personal jurisdiction, abandoning the “continuous and systematic” contacts inquiry for general jurisdiction. Daimler announced a new rule, providing that only in “an exceptional case” could a corporation’s operations in a state be so substantial as to subject it to general jurisdiction other than where it is incorporated or has its principal place of business. This article discusses a number of recent decisions from the Southern District of New York that illustrate the sea change wrought by Daimler on New York’s personal jurisdiction jurisprudence.

Related Lawyers: Judith L. Mogul, Edward M. Spiro

02.17.16 | Blog Posts

GSK and the U.K.’s Competition and Markets Authority: A New Agency Arrives in Health Care Enforcement

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

It does not take much these days to notice that law enforcement has gone global. The transnational nature of prosecutions, enforcement actions, and regulatory proceedings can be seen in a host of recent cases. The prosecution of the FIFA scandal, for example, involves not just the U.S. Department of Justice but also the active participation of the Swiss authorities, and the governments of Costa Rica and Colombia have recently announced their own independent investigations. Similarly, the alleged manipulation of interbank lending rates has led to prosecutions by the United Kingdom’s Serious Fraud Office and the U.S. Department of Justice, as well as actions by a less well-known enforcement agency, Japan’s Financial Services Agency. And as this blog noted over two years ago, the Chinese Ministry of Public Security led an investigation into Glaxo Smith Kline’s alleged bribing of officials and doctors to utilize the company’s drugs, which ultimately resulted in a $500 million corporate fine and a suspended sentence for a Glaxo executive who otherwise would have been relegated to a Chinese prison. [...]

Related Lawyers: Robert M. Radick

02.10.16 | Blog Posts

Non-Prosecution Agreements: Reserved for VIPs?

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

Should individuals who cooperate with the government in high-profile cases get better deals than individuals who cooperate in cases that do not make the headlines? The rules laid out in the Department of Justice’s U.S. Attorney’s Manual suggest that the answer—at least in the government’s view—is “yes.” [...]

Related Lawyers: Brian A. Jacobs

02.03.16 | Articles

Potential Impact of Supreme Court’s Upcoming Political Quid Pro Quo Case

New York Law Journal

The Supreme Court's grant of certiorari in the highly-publicized case of former Virginia Governor, Robert McDonnell, to examine the contours of a quid pro quo arrangement under federal law will have an impact on more than just federal political corruption prosecutions. A number of other federal criminal statutes, including the Anti-Kickback Enforcement Act and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, include a quid pro quo requirement. In this article, we discuss the McDonnell case and its implications.

Related Lawyers: Robert J. Anello, Richard F. Albert

01.26.16 | Articles

Protecting Privileged Documents from the IRS

New York Law Journal

Before executing complicated financial transactions, sophisticated taxpayers frequently seek advice from lawyers and accountants. These professionals will often prepare detailed written analyses of the likely tax consequences of the transactions under consideration, which may be shared with counterparties to the transactions. In auditing tax returns reporting the transactions in question, the Internal Revenue Service may seek copies of the analyses from the counterparties, leaving the taxpayers to argue that sharing the materials did not constitute a waiver of either the attorney-client privilege or work product doctrine. This article discusses two recent decisions by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversing district court decisions rejecting assertions of privilege.

Related Lawyers: Jeremy H. Temkin

01.20.16 | Blog Posts

Mixed Messages When Courts Issue a Stern Warning to Prosecutors

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

Much has been written over the past few years about prosecutors’ violations of Brady v. Maryland, the Supreme Court case which held that prosecutors must turn over exculpatory material to the defense in time for the defense to use such material. There is a controversy about whether such Brady violations are an epidemic or an aberration. Often, litigation over Brady violations will focus on whether the violation was deliberate or accidental, although Brady violations occur even when the prosecutor acts in good faith. [...]

Related Lawyers: Lawrence S. Bader

01.15.16 | Blog Posts

LinkedIn for Lawyers: Newly Issued Ethical Guidance Makes Social Media Use Less Risky

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

The ethics guidance interpreting "Attorney Advertising" rules in the social media context continues to evolve, but this time the evolution appears to be for the better, taking into account the realities of the growing use of social media. As you may recall, early last year, the New York County Lawyers Association ("NYCLA") weighed in on the ethical implications for lawyers using LinkedIn and suggested that attorneys using the self-proclaimed “World’s Largest Professional Network” needed to beware that their posts on that site, even the most casual, did not run afoul of the attorney advertising rules. Now, however, a recently published Formal Opinion of the Committee on Professional Ethics of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York ("City Bar") has called into question the scope and applicability of the NYCLA opinion, recognizing that use of ethic rules developed for a pre-social media world in a post-social media context may be akin to attempting to fit a square peg into a round hole. As the City Bar acknowledged: the current attorney advertising rules "defy easy extension to the digital world and, in particular, to social media content." The difficulty of applying the rules of ethics to lawyers' social media activities, however, has not stopped lawyers from using social media websites -- particularly LinkedIn -- for professional self-promotion. The new City Bar opinion, however, sets forth a test that might make it easier for attorneys to navigate their responsibilities while continuing to document their achievements, both personal and professional on the internet. [...]

Related Lawyers: Catherine M. Foti

01.13.16 | Blog Posts

Added Penalties for Worker Safety Violations: The Other Yates Memorandum

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

In September 2015, Department of Justice Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates issued a memorandum instructing federal prosecutors to step-up individual prosecutions for corporate wrongdoing. The much-discussed “Yates Memorandum” was issued in response to criticism that federal prosecutors had been lax in prosecuting individual executives for crimes committed during the 2008 financial crisis and has garnered a lot of attention from practitioners and commentators. White-collar lawyers and their corporate clients also should be aware of the “other” Yates Memorandum quietly issued at the end of 2015, announcing that federal prosecutors will look for ways to charge a variety of felonies in routine worker safety cases to take advantage of the greater penalties available under environmental and other criminal laws. [...]

Related Lawyers: Robert J. Anello

01.06.16 | Articles

Deferred Prosecution Agreements in Decline? Enforcement Implications

New York Law Journal

In recent years, the government has relied on deferred prosecution agreements, or DPAs, to resolve many investigations of companies, often without charges being filed against high-level employees. This has led to criticism of the Department of Justice. In this article, we discuss the recent Yates Memorandum, which sets out the Department of Justice’s new policy to hold more individuals responsible for corporate wrongdoing. We explain that the policy could have a significant impact on white-collar enforcement – and possibly lead to excesses associated with prior Department of Justice policies.

Related Lawyers: Elkan Abramowitz, Jonathan S. Sack

12.16.15 | Blog Posts

United States v. Bert: The Second Circuit’s Newfound Need for Speed?

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

In September 2015, a divided panel of the Second Circuit took the drastic step of ordering the reversal of defendant Raheem Bert’s conviction for firearms offenses and the dismissal of his indictment with prejudice due to an inadvertent violation of the Speedy Trial Act.* The panel’s decision, written by Circuit Judge Rosemary S. Pooler and joined by Circuit Judge Peter W. Hall—over a dissent by Circuit Judge Dennis Jacobs—explained this result by referencing the need to vindicate the Speedy Trial Act’s “purpose of expeditiously bringing criminal cases to trial,” and found that “[b]arring reprosecution in this case will have a more positive and substantial impact upon the administration of justice—and most certainly on improved administration of the Speedy Trial Act—than would permitting the prosecution to proceed.” [...]

* Update: On February 9, 2016, subsequent to the publication of this blog post, the Second Circuit withdrew its original opinion in United States v. Bert and issued a new opinion. Just as in the original opinion, Judge Pooler wrote for herself and for Judge Hall, while Judge Jacobs dissented. In this new opinion, however, instead of taking what my original post called the “drastic step” of ordering the reversal of Bert’s conviction and the dismissal of his indictment with prejudice, the majority took the more modest step of remanding Bert’s case so that the district court could make additional factual findings regarding the speedy trial delay. Nevertheless, as Judge Jacobs highlights in his dissent, in many respects, the majority’s instructions to the district court to make additional factual findings go beyond what had previously been legally required, and warrant close attention by counsel in future cases.

Related Lawyers: Brian A. Jacobs


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