Yesterday, I shared with you this post re-capping Alishan Naqvee’s introduction to the topic of anti-corruption at our 2011 Annual Meeting. To follow up on that, we’ll review Stuart Gerson’s (Epstein Becker & Green) comments during the session regarding the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and its implications for those in the room.
Stuart provided the attendees with both an article he and a colleague authored on the FCPA, and an overview that their healthcare group had developed. Stuart said that as Alishan had mentioned, both the FCPA and the new UK Anti-Bribery law are extraterritorial – but not only are they applied overseas throughout the world, but they are also applied against non-US citizens, as long as the commerce that they’re supporting is in the stream of interstate commerce within the US.
So non-US citizens who have never stepped food in the US are subject to the FCPA, which is a criminal statute that has long jail sentences associated with it. Additionally, they have fines up to $2 million per offense – and an offense is an individual act, so there could be a long series of them that results in the fines adding up to immense sums. And this is applicable all around the world.