James Tillen and Matteson Ellis were quoted regarding the pending guidance to Brazil's recently enacted Anti-Bribery Law. The Brazilian law is particularly broad in comparison to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) as it further establishes liability for corruption related to the public procurement process. The upcoming World Cup and Olympic games in Brazil increase the likelihood of such corrupt conduct. "The amount of infrastructure projects that go along with these events are prime areas of risk for corruption, collusion, and bid-rigging -- fraud that could be prosecuted under the new law," Tillen said.
In addition, the law creates harsher penalties than the FCPA. There is no centralized enforcement agency, and instead, any regulatory body may bring an enforcement action against corruption. That effectively means if you're a multinational company with operations in Brazil, you potentially could have multiple authorities investigating the same alleged wrongful conduct, Ellis said. There have already been high-profile enforcement actions that signal Brazil is particularly serious about the law. "You need one enforcement action to get the ball rolling to prove this has teeth and to get companies more worried about it," Tillen said.