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SEC Adopts Conflict Minerals Rules

The Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC" or "Commission") on August 22, 2012 adopted final rules regarding disclosure and reporting requirements with respect to the use of "conflict minerals" to implement Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act.  The final rules were adopted by a vote of 3 to 2, with Commissioners Paredes and Gallagher dissenting.   The 356 page adopting release containing the final rules is available here.  Gibson Dunn will issue a more extensive client alert in the near future with a more detailed discussion and analysis of the rules.  However, from the discussion at the Commission meeting and a Commission briefing paper, we note a few significant points: The final rules apply to any issuer that files repor

Client Alert | August 23, 2012

New Iran Sanctions Legislation: Tighter Restrictions on Indirect Dealings and Enhanced Reporting Obligations

On Friday, August 10, 2012, President Obama signed the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act (the "Act"), greatly expanding the scope of Iran sanctions.  According to Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a principal proponent, the Act "seeks to tighten the chokehold on the regime beyond anything that has been done before."  Among its most important provisions, the Act places tighter restrictions on U.S.

Client Alert | August 14, 2012

2012 Mid-Year OFAC Update

The first half of 2012 saw the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") within the United States Department of Treasury continue enforcement of U.S. sanctions laws and issue a flurry of new regulations and guidelines.

Client Alert | July 27, 2012

2012 Mid-Year Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

Deferred Prosecution Agreements ("DPAs") and Non-Prosecution Agreements ("NPAs") (collectively, "agreements") in recent years have become a primary tool of the U.S.

Client Alert | July 10, 2012

2012 Mid-Year FCPA Update

As the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA") turns 35 years old, the spike in enforcement activity that we first observed five years ago appears (at least for the moment) to be leveling off.  Nevertheless, numerous developments this year bespeak a statute that is maturing rather than falling into obscurity:  the first sustained pattern of trial activity; increasing "private attorney general" enforcement; and serious policy debates between industry, executive, and legislative interests leading up to much-anticipated statutory guidance from government regulators.  The first half of 2012 was packed with important FCPA developments.  This client update provides an overview of the FCPA and a survey of FCPA enforcement, litigation, and legislative develop

Client Alert | July 9, 2012

President Obama Signs Order Targeting “Foreign Sanctions Evaders”

On May 1, 2012, President Obama signed Executive Order 13608 "Prohibiting Certain Transactions With and Suspending Entry Into the United States of Foreign Sanctions Evaders With Respect to Iran and Syria" ("FSE E.O.").[i] The FSE E.O.

Client Alert | June 7, 2012

Mobile Remittances and Dodd-Frank: Reviewing the Effects of the CFPB Regulations

Los Angeles associate Colin C. Richard is the author of "Mobile Remittances and Dodd-Frank: Reviewing the Effects of the CFPB Regulations," published in the Pittsburgh Journal of Technology Law & Policy, April 2012.

Client Alert | April 20, 2012

European Union Announces Adoption of Stricter Sanctions vs. Iran

On January 23, 2012,[i] the Council of the European Union agreed to impose additional restrictive measures against Iran in the range of industrial sectors, inter alia: in the energy sector, including an embargo of Iranian crude oil imports to the EU; in the financial sector, including against the Central Bank of Iran; in the transport sector; additional export restrictions on gold and on sensitive dual-use goods and technology; as well as additional designations of specific persons and entities.[ii] The Decisions adopted by the Council were in response to ongoing Iranian activities relating to the suspected development of military nuclear technology, particularly its acceleration of uranium enrichment activities, in violation of six UNSC Resolutions and eleven IAEA Board Resolutions.

Client Alert | January 30, 2012

A Proposed Limitation by Bank Indonesia on Bank Ownership Looms on the Horizon

Over the past ten years, Indonesia's commercial banking sector has been an attractive destination for foreign investors.  This has been in large part due to the Indonesian government's relaxed banking policy, which until now has been geared towards fostering foreign investment in the industry.  A proposed amendment to the banking policy, however, may have significant consequences for current and potential investors.Following the 1997 Asian financial crisis, the Indonesian government enacted Government Regulation No.

Client Alert | January 19, 2012

2011 Year-End OFAC Update

The year 2011, like the year 2010, saw substantial fines and continuing focus on export enforcement at the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") within the United States Department of the Treasury.

Client Alert | January 18, 2012

2011 Year-End Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

During the past decade, the U.S.

Client Alert | January 4, 2012

2011 Year-End FCPA Update

2011 marked yet another dynamic year for the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA"), including numerous significant enforcement actions, more trials than in any other year in the history of the statute, and a growing public debate about the policy ramifications of a U.S.-dominated international anti-corruption enforcement field.  Those close to the statute can feel the unmatched pace at which the 34-year-old law is now developing.  With more litigated decisions, more bills pending in Congress, and more interplay between the FCPA and other international laws prohibiting cross-border bribery, there is a growing sense of urgency amongst FCPA practitioners as to the direction the statute will take in the coming years.  Perhaps sensing these dynamics, Assistant Attorney

Client Alert | January 3, 2012

State Department Issues Proposed Rule to Amend ITAR’s Broker Registration and Licensing Requirements

On December 19, 2011, the U.S. Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls ("DDTC") issued a proposed rule to amend parts 120, 122, 126, 127, and 129 of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations ("ITAR"), which implement Section 38 of the Arms Export Control Act ("AECA").

Client Alert | December 19, 2011

United States, United Kingdom, and Canada Expand Sanctions Against Iran

In November 2011, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported that the Islamic Republic of Iran has violated its international obligations by conducting activities relevant to developing a nuclear explosive device.

Client Alert | December 6, 2011

The Rising Tide: Recognizing Your Criminal Prosecution Risks Abroad

San Francisco of counsel Winston Chan and Los Angeles associate Justin Liu are the authors of "The Rising Tide: Recognizing Your Criminal Prosecution Risks Abroad" [PDF] published in the December 2011 issue of Compliance Today.

Client Alert | December 1, 2011

FinCEN Issues Final Rule Implementing New CISADA Regulations to Require U.S. Banks to Seek Information from Foreign Correspondent Banks Regarding Financial Ties to Iran

On October 11, 2011, the United States Department of the Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network ("FinCEN)" published in the Federal Register the final version of new regulations implementing section 104(e) of the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 ("CISADA").

Client Alert | November 1, 2011

Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) Compliance: Recent Developments

Two recent developments illustrate the importance of adaptable and decisive OFAC compliance programs. The first development was President Obama's August 17, 2011 Executive Order 13582, which considerably tightened U.S.

Client Alert | August 30, 2011

Office of Foreign Assets Control: The Little Agency with a Big Bite

Washington, D.C. partner Judith Lee and associate James Doody are the authors of "Office of Foreign Assets Control: The Little Agency with a Big Bite" [PDF] published in The Review of Banking & Financial Services in August 2011.

Client Alert | August 30, 2011

FCPA: Who Is a Foreign Official?

Washington, D.C. partner F. Joseph Warin, and associates John Chesley and Jeremy Joseph are the authors of "FCPA: Who Is a Foreign Official?" [PDF] published in the August 8, 2011 issue of Compliance Reporter magazine.

Client Alert | August 8, 2011

New Indonesian Law on Currency May Require Review of All Foreign Currency Denominated Contracts

The Indonesian House of Representatives on 31 May 2011 passed Law No.

Client Alert | July 15, 2011

New International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) Exemption for Dual Nationals and Third-Country Nationals Employed by End-Users

On Monday, May 16, 2011, the United States Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls ("DDTC") issued a final rule amending parts 120, 124, and 126 of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations ("ITAR").

Client Alert | July 13, 2011

2011 Mid-Year Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

Deferred Prosecution Agreements ("DPAs") and Non-Prosecution Agreements ("NPAs") are an increasingly familiar tool used by the Department of Justice ("DOJ") to resolve alleged corporate wrongdoing.  In May 2011, for the first time, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC" or "Commission") entered into a DPA to resolve an enforcement action following its first-ever NPA in December 2010.  Through these agreements, DOJ and, now, the SEC, agree to forgo prosecution in exchange for the company's agreement not to commit further violations of the law and to undertake specific cooperation and compliance obligations.  In the DOJ context, DPAs and NPAs differ in one material respect:  DOJ typically files a crimi

Client Alert | July 12, 2011

2011 Mid-Year FCPA Update

For years now, we have been documenting the unprecedented surge of anti-corruption enforcement activity by the two regulators charged with enforcing the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA")--the U.S.

Client Alert | July 11, 2011

President Obama Announces U.S. Sanctions Against Syria

"The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms the use of force by the Syrian government against demonstrators. This outrageous use of violence to quell protests must come to an end now.

Client Alert | May 2, 2011

Dodd-Frank, International Remittances, and Mobile Banking: The Federal Reserve’s Role in Enabling International Economic Development

Los Angeles associate Colin C. Richard  is the author of "Dodd-Frank, International Remittances, and Mobile Banking: The Federal Reserve's Role in Enabling International Economic Development," published in the Northwestern University Law Review Colloquy, March 2011. 

Client Alert | March 31, 2011

2010: OFAC’s Big Year

Washington, D.C. partner Judith Lee and associate James Doody are the authors of "2010: OFAC's Big Year" [PDF] published by Law360 at www.law360.com on March 14, 2011.

Client Alert | March 14, 2011

Libya Situation Update

The United States, and the entire world, continues to be outraged by the appalling violence against the Libyan people. The United States is helping to lead an international effort to deter further violence, put in place unprecedented sanctions to hold the Qadhafi government accountable, and support the aspirations of the Libyan people.

Client Alert | March 7, 2011

United States and United Nations Impose Sanctions Against Libya

On Friday, February 25, 2011 President Obama issued an Executive Order blocking property and prohibiting certain transactions related to Libya.

Client Alert | February 28, 2011

2010 Year-End OFAC Update

Printable PDF The year 2010 saw increasing "power ball" fines and an increasing focus on export enforcement at the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") within the United States Department of the Treasury.

Client Alert | February 23, 2011

U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network Issues Guidance Regarding Recent Events in Tunisia

Printable PDF A popular uprising ended the 23-year old regime of former Tunisian president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who recently fled to Saudi Arabia.

Client Alert | January 26, 2011

United States Eases Export Controls on Certain Encryption Software

Printable PDF On January 7, 2011, the United States Commerce Department's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) published a final rule that eases export controls on some types of encryption software.

Client Alert | January 19, 2011

2010 Year-End Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

The United States Department of Justice ("DOJ") has long had discretion to defer or decline prosecution of a corporation, for a host of reasons.  But over the past decade, the formalization of the declination process for corporations via deferred prosecution agreements ("DPAs") and non-prosecution agreements ("NPAs") has evolved rapidly.  Indeed, these agreements are now one of two mainstays of the DOJ's efforts to combat corporate crime.

Client Alert | January 4, 2011

2010 Year-End FCPA Update

Printable PDF"FCPA enforcement is stronger than it's ever been -- and getting stronger."  So declared Assistant Attorney General Lanny A.

Client Alert | January 3, 2011

President Obama Establishes Export Enforcement Coordination Center

On November 9, 2010, President Obama issued Executive Order 13558, establishing an interagency Export Enforcement Coordination Center ("EECC") within the United States Department of Homeland Security ("DHS").

Client Alert | December 21, 2010

Do Rankings Matter? Transparency International Issues Its 2010 Corruption Perceptions Index

Transparency International (TI) recently released its annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) (available here), spurring a flurry of fanfare in the press about various countries' shifts up and down in the rankings.  But it is unclear how much of this attention is warranted.  As TI repeatedly acknowledges, the CPI only measures perceptions of corruption, not corruption itself.  Further, changes in TI's perceived corruption scores can be misleading--even to the extent they mirror actual corruption--as adjustments in TI's methodology from year to year may move countries up or down the ranking despite no real change in how that country is viewed.  Yet TI's CPI remains the benchmark indicator of corruption worldwide.  Warranted or not, the rankings attain real signifi

Client Alert | November 16, 2010

European Union Adopts Comprehensive Iran Sanctions

On October 27, 2010, the European Union adopted a sanctions regime against the Islamic Republic of Iran in furtherance of diplomatic efforts to find a negotiated solution to ensure that the country's nuclear program is exclusively for peaceful purposes.

Client Alert | November 3, 2010

FinCEN Proposes Reporting of Cross-Border Electronic Transmittals of Funds

On September 30, 2010, the United States Department of the Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) published in the Federal Register its long-awaited notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that would require certain banks and money transmitters to report to FinCEN transmittal orders associated with certain cross-border electronic transmittals of funds (CBETFs).

Client Alert | October 12, 2010

Iran Sanctions: U.S. Treasury Issues Iranian Financial Sanctions Regulations

On August 16, 2010, the United States Department of the Treasury issued the Iranian Financial Sanctions Regulations ("the IFSR"), 75 Fed. Reg. 49,836, to implement subsections 104(c) and 104(d) of the recent Comprehensive Iran Sanctions Accountability and Divestment Act of 2010 ("CISADA").

Client Alert | August 24, 2010

2010 Mid-Year Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

Consistent with the past several years, the first half of 2010 brought several Deferred Prosecution Agreements ("DPAs") and Non-Prosecution Agreements ("NPAs").  Although rarely used a decade ago, such agreements now are an important governmental tool in the fight against corporate crime.  DPAs and NPAs are agreements between the government and a corporation whereby the government agrees to defer or forgo criminal charges against the corporation in exchange for adherence to the terms of the agreement.  The purpose of DPAs and NPAs is to deter, punish, and reform corporate behavior without imposing collateral consequences on corporations and innocent parties such as employees, local community ties, and shareholders.  Not surprisingly, the Departmen

Client Alert | August 5, 2010

Iran Sanctions Legislation: New Controls and Penalties for U.S. Financial Institutions

On July 1, 2010, President Obama signed the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions Accountability and Divestment Act of 2010 ("CISADA"), which amends and extends sanctions imposed under the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act of 2009 and the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996 (formerly the Iran and Libya Sanctions Act of 1996).

Client Alert | July 28, 2010

2010 Mid-Year FCPA Update

On January 18, 2010, hundreds of law enforcement agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and City of London Police launched a coordinated, bi-continental strike, executing twenty-one search warrants and arresting twenty-two people in what Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer described as "the largest action ever undertaken by the Justice Department against individuals for FCPA violations."  Thus began the year in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement, a juggernaut that each annum surpasses the record heights set the year before.  This client update provides an overview of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA") and a survey of FCPA enforcement activities during the first half of 2010.  It also analyzes recent enforcement trends and offer

Client Alert | July 8, 2010

New U.S. Export Control Regulation Lessens Restrictions on Products with Ancillary Cryptography and Eases Review and Reporting Requirements

The United States Department of Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) issued an interim final rule today that reduces restrictions on products with ancillary cryptography as well as increases the efficiency of its review and reporting process.

Client Alert | June 25, 2010

2009 Year-End Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

Although Deferred Prosecution Agreements ("DPAs") and Non-Prosecution Agreements ("NPAs") were rarely used and hardly discussed a decade ago, in the last several years they have become a hot topic and common aspect of corporate prosecutions:  Congress, legal academics, and practitioners—from prosecutors to defense counsel—have weighed in on the Department of Justice's ("DOJ's") use of the agreements.  DPAs and NPAs are types of pre-trial agreements whereby the government agrees not to pursue charges against a corporation so long as the corporation abides by the terms of the agreement.  Although often similar in content, the emerging difference between a DPA and an NPA is whether a criminal information is filed in a federal court.  With

Client Alert | January 7, 2010

Export Control Update: Amendment to International Traffic in Arms Regulations Clarifies That Technical Data May Be Physically Taken Out of the Country

On November 24, 2009, the Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, Office of Policy issued a proposed amendment to the existing exemption in Section 125.4(b)(9) of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations ("ITAR") permitting the export of technical data under the ITAR for use by U.S.

Client Alert | January 5, 2010

2009 Year-End FCPA Update

"One can say without exaggeration that this past year was probably the most dynamic single year in the more than thirty years since the FCPA was enacted."  So began Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer in a recent recap of 2009 Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA") enforcement.  Indeed, for the fourth time in the last five years, the Department of Justice ("DOJ") and Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), the statute's dual enforcers, set a record by bringing more FCPA prosecutions than in any prior year in the FCPA's history.  Foreign anti-corruption prosecutions also have reached unprecedented levels.  Once an erratic enforcement priority, combating international corruption has now garnered attention at the highest leve

Client Alert | January 4, 2010

New Legislation Could Expand U.S. Sanctions on Iran

In response to increased international concern regarding Iran's nuclear fuel enrichment activities, both houses of Congress have introduced legislation that could substantially expand the impact of economic and trade sanctions against Iran.

Client Alert | November 30, 2009

Changes to Cuba Embargo — More to Come from Obama Administration?

Earlier this year, the Obama administration announced a number of changes in U.S. policy toward the Republic of Cuba in four main areas: (1) family visits to Cuba; (2) remittances to family members in Cuba; (3) telecommunications services; and (4) gift parcels.

Client Alert | November 12, 2009

2009 Mid-Year Update on Corporate Deferred Prosecution and Non-Prosecution Agreements

DPAs and NPAs, Too Much of A Good Thing?Although virtually unheard of a decade ago, Deferred Prosecution Agreements ("DPAs") and Non-Prosecution Agreements ("NPAs") are a growing phenomenon in corporate prosecutions.  Essentially, DPAs and NPAs are agreements whereby the government agrees not to prosecute a corporation so long as the corporation abides by the terms of the agreement.  The key distinction between a DPA and an NPA is whether or not charges are filed against the corporation:  with a DPA the government files criminal charges with the court, while with an NPA nothing is filed with the court so long as the corporation completes the terms of the agreement--the agreement is strictly between the government and the corporation.Following the collapse

Client Alert | July 8, 2009

2009 Mid-Year FCPA Update

As the inauguration of Barack Obama in January 2009 ushered in a new U.S.

Client Alert | July 7, 2009

President Obama Signs Legislation Significantly Expanding the Scope of the False Claims Act

On May 20, 2009, President Obama signed into law significant changes to the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. § 3729 et seq. ("FCA").  The amendments will increase the liability exposure of every company that does business with the federal government and of every company that supplies goods or services that are reimbursed by federal government dollars.  This update provides an overview of the changes brought about by the new law, which (among other things), legislatively overturns the Supreme Court's 9-0 ruling last term in Allison Engine Co., Inc.

Client Alert | May 26, 2009