Former Vitol trader indicted on FCPA charges.

In the first of what is thought to be many Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) charges to be brought to the energy trading community, a former Vitol trader was indicted on FCPA charges by the Department of Justice (DoJ). A previously sealed indictment (see here) was unsealed yesterday outlining the government’s case against Javier Aguilar. […]

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission updates its Enforcement Manual

Civil Monetary Penalty Guidance On May 28, 2020 James McDonald, Director of Enforcement at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) gave a speech at the Futures Industry Association addressing the issues of penalties and penalty guidance, following up on a memo to staff (see here). This marked the first time in 25 years the CFTC […]

Bitcoin and how not to be anonymous

As crypto currencies become more prevalent people are starting to figure out that crypto currencies do not necessarily provide anonymity. Case in point Maksim Boiko a.k.a. “Gangass”. On March 27, 2020 the Department of Justice unsealed an affidavit for a criminal complaint and arrest warrant against Mr. Boiko alleging conspiracy to commit money laundering. In […]

FinCen accesses a civil penalty of $450,000 against a former risk officer

Overview On March 4, 2020 issued a settlement agreement with U.S. Bank’s former Chief Operational Risk Officer Michael LaFontaine whereby FinCen fined Mr. LaFontaine $450,000 and banned him from a compliance role for six years. The settlement agreements state the reason for the actions is due to “his failure to prevent violations of the Bank […]

The Wells Fargo Settlement – a new twist on identity theft

Overview On February 20, 2020 the United States Attorney’s Offices of Central District of California and the Western District of North Carolina announced a settlement with Wells Fargo & Company that included a $3 billion dollar fine. Interestingly, the two criminal statutes cited were 18 U.S.C. 1005 and 1028A. 18 U.S.C. 1005 comes under Chapter […]

Holding individuals accountable

OverviewThe Department of Justice unsealed a 35-page indictment filed in February of 2015 against three individuals who were executives at Alstom S.A. (Alstom) and Marubeni Corporation (Marubeni) this week. Alstom is a French power and transportation company. Marubeni is a Japanese based trading company. The three individuals named were Junji Kusiinoki of Marubeni and Reza […]

Tim Leissner and 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB)

On December 16, 2019 the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a Cease and Desist Order against Respondent Tim Leissner the former senior executive of Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (Goldman). The Cease and Desist Order cites three specific bond offerings underwritten by Goldman for the 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MBD) fund. 1MDB was created to […]

The Walmart FCPA case

In the beginning… The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) was enacted in 1977, applies to companies listed on U.S. stock exchanges and private companies organized under U.S. laws, their shareholders, directors, employees and agents, as well as other individuals who violate the statute while in U.S. territory. The first FCPA case undertaken by the Department […]