Miller & Chevalier is recognized by Chambers Global and Chambers USA as a leader in FCPA-related and global anti-corruption investigations, counseling, and compliance. We are consistently ranked as a top FCPA firm in both publications, which points to our "broad spread of talent at both partner and associate level" and notes we are "frequently called upon to handle high-stakes global investigations involving jurisdictions considered at high risk for corruption." For over 40 years, from our offices near the FCPA enforcement agencies in Washington, DC, we have partnered with our clients to help them successfully manage and prevent significant FCPA and corruption-related financial and reputational risks.
Our clients include a cross-section of Global 100 corporations as well as emerging companies and individuals, many of whom have engaged us for a decade or more as they have expanded their businesses around the world. Our team of lawyers includes one of the "deans of the international trade bar," former prosecutors, former in-house counsel, and several current and former Independent Compliance Monitors.
By their nature, cross-border anti-corruption investigations involve multiple locations, countries, and regulators operating under a variety of legal frameworks. As noted by Global Investigations Review (GIR), the firm is "truly international in scope" and "regularly advises on some of the biggest cases." Lawyers on our team have a deep understanding of anti-corruption requirements around the world, including the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), the U.K. Bribery Act of 2010 (UKBA), laws implementing the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Anti-Bribery Convention and Inter-American Convention Against Corruption, and the United Nations. Convention Against Corruption. As a result, we are adept at helping our clients navigate issues across borders and involving multiple jurisdictions.
Our diverse team enables us on short notice to deploy experienced anti-corruption lawyers ranging from junior associates to senior members from our offices in Washington, DC, close to U.S. enforcement agencies, to locations around the globe. Our team's effectiveness is enhanced by our lawyers' multi-cultural backgrounds and fluency in 17 languages. In recent years, our lawyers have made more than 250 trips to more than 80 countries on six continents. Clients have found this rapid response approach to be efficient and effective for managing complex corruption-related issues.
Our work causes us to deal frequently and extensively with the U.S. enforcement agencies, and we also have significant experience in managing contacts with regulators all over the world. Our experience and relationships with government regulators means we can provide our clients with insights into how FCPA and other enforcers are likely to approach issues. We bring credibility and consistency to our work, whether in fairly disclosing investigative results, urging a declination, or representing a commitment a client has made. It is no wonder that GIR found that the team "is recognized for its ability to secure favorable settlements with authorities."
The extent of our practice means we are steeped in common fact patterns and legal issues that can arise in the many jurisdictions in which our clients operate. This results in lean staffing, minimal learning curves, and efficient problem solving for our clients. We also have found cost-effectiveness for our clients using our core teams of experienced lawyers over regional or local offices or counsel with little anti-corruption experience. Our clients' matters also often involve economic sanctions, export controls, anti-money laundering, and securities enforcement issues so they benefit from our recognized leadership in those areas as well.
Our clients are our strongest calling card and we are proud to have represented so many global players. We represent large multinationals from virtually every industry and many different countries, as well as emerging companies. We frequently advise our clients' boards, audit committees, and senior management, as well as individuals, accounting and auditing firms, governmental entities, and other law firms.
Our Track Record
Our team has conducted significantly more than 100 independent internal investigations, advised on due diligence and other issues in transactions exceeding $100 billion in total value, and helped develop, test and improve more than 200 anti-corruption compliance programs for clients. In addition, lawyers at the firm have been selected as FCPA Independent Compliance Monitors, their deputies, or U.S. counsel five times, among the most of any firm, and we have served as counsel to an additional 10 companies navigating a monitorship or self-reporting obligations. Members of the practice have served as Monitors in non-FCPA matters that nonetheless share similar issues and require strong compliance program experience.
Matters we have handled include the first FCPA Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA) accepted by the U.S. government, the first DPA that the government agreed to terminate before its term had run, and many cases that resulted in declinations, including some that included lengthy government investigations.
- Four Members of our practice have served as Independent Compliance Monitors, their deputies, or U.S counsel in the wake of FCPA resolutions by companies: Homer E. Moyer, Jr. (Titan), Kathryn Cameron Atkinson (twice: KBR and Zimmer Biomet), John E. Davis (Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM)), and Sandra M. Hanna (VimpelCom). In addition, Alejandra Montenegro Almonte served as deputy in for the SQM monitorship and is Monitor in a non-FCPA matter with the Massachusetts Gaming Commission. These engagements require extensive U.S. agency vetting and sign-off as to the Monitor's experience and suitability and require efficient yet comprehensive reviews of corporate compliance programs and the exercise of independent judgment in balancing the goals of the company and the agencies.
- Kathryn Cameron Atkinson was appointed to serve as Independent Compliance Monitor for medical technology company Zimmer Biomet pursuant to an FCPA DPA arising out of conduct in Latin America. The scope of the Monitor's work was global, given the company's world-wide operations. Monitorship team members draw upon their Spanish, Portuguese, and Mandarin Chinese language skills for on-the-ground interviews during compliance assessments conducted in various countries. The work involved evaluation of all aspects of the compliance program and related internal accounting controls, including evaluation of investigation and audit practices, and regular coordination with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
- John E. Davis was appointed to act as Independent Compliance Monitor for Chilean mining company SQM pursuant to an FCPA disposition and Alejandra Montenegro Almonte served as deputy. The scope of the Monitor's work was global, not limited to Latin America, as SQM is a U.S. issuer and thus subject to multiple anti-corruption and other relevant laws. The monitorship team evaluated all aspects of company's compliance program, including risk assessment methodologies, protocols for and execution of internal investigations and responses to external government inquiries, and related internal controls. The team recommended program enhancements and improvements, and the company received certifications from the U.S. agencies in 2019.
- Sandra M. Hanna has significant experience serving as the deputy to the Independent Corporate Monitor, or advisor to the Monitor, in settled resolutions with the DOJ and SEC in both FCPA and securities matters, including in the VimpelCom disposition.
- Miller & Chevalier is advising and representing a multinational company in connection with its obligations under an ongoing DPA before the DOJ, SEC, and Southern District of New York (SDNY), including assisting with advice on DPA compliance, internal investigations, third party due diligence processes and reviews, and mergers & acquisitions (M&A) transactions, in the context of DPA obligations and a monitorship. The team benefits from its extensive investigations and compliance experience in the industry and in specific high-risk regions, leveraging its cultural and language skills that include Spanish, Portuguese, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, French, Ukrainian, Belarussian, Bulgarian, Arabic, and Turkish. Case issues have included ensuring compliance with DPA obligations, compliance and controls improvements, interactions with the client's Independent Compliance Monitor, and conducting investigations.
- We have handled multiple matters for a global provider of drilling services, including:
- Conducting an independent investigation into the company's historical relationship with Petrobras as part of the global Lava Jato corruption investigation in Brazil. Both U.S. agencies that reviewed these issues closed their respective investigations into the client with no enforcement action.
- Assisting with multiple due diligence reviews and compliance integrations of acquisition targets and joint venture partners, including an acquisition valued and over $2 billion, and joint venture partners in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Ghana, and potential partners in Libya and Nigeria.
- We have conducted multiple internal investigations of and given compliance advice related to portfolio companies for a $38 billion global private equity firm investing in oil and gas and alternative energy sectors, focused on Latin America, Africa, and Europe.
- For a U.S.-based energy company, auditing anti-corruption compliance practices in its Mexican operations in anticipation of a formal audit conducted by the new presidential administration of Mexico.
- For a Mexican energy infrastructure development company, performing a corruption risk assessment, drafting anti-corruption compliance policies, conducting anti-corruption compliance trainings, performing due diligence on third party agents and local business partners, and managing FCPA issues as they arise.
- For the first private Mexico-based oil and gas exploration company, building its anti-corruption compliance program and managing FCPA risks when they arise. The work has included vetting a business partner for corruption risks, negotiating compliance provisions in a venture agreement with that partner, conducting formal risk assessments, performing compliance trainings, and conducting third-party due diligence.
- We are representing a Swiss national and private wealth advisor (Daisy Rafoi-Bleuler), who was arrested in Italy on an Interpol Red Notice issued by the U.S. In response to the U.S.'s efforts to extradite the client in relation to an FCPA and money laundering scandal involving the Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A (PDVSA), engaged in litigation resulting in a Houston federal district court decision dismissing the indictment against the client, citing jurisdictional issues. We are currently litigating the DOJ's appeal of that decision.
- We conducted an internal investigation for a manufacturing company in an FCPA-related matter focused on China and Southeast Asia implicating applicable laws in multiple jurisdictions. We represented the company related to its disclosure of the matter to U.S. authorities and the resulting U.S. government investigation, which ended when the authorities decided to take no action. As part of remediation activities related to the results of the investigations, we performed a global compliance risk assessment and advised on updates to company's anti-corruption compliance program.
- We conducted a review of a Fortune 100 information technology company's global anti-corruption program against applicable statutory standards and best practices, with the goal of tailoring the compliance program to fit the company's needs following a corporate restructuring. Following the compliance program review, the firm assisted with updating and modifying the company's enhanced due diligence program. The firm has also been retained as one of the company's anti-corruption counsel and advised on a range of specific third party issues.
- The firm represented a large oil and gas company in responding to inquiries from the SEC and DOJ related to business in an African country, in conjunction with an inquiry from a foreign regulatory authority regarding similar issues.
- We represented an executive in an extensive FCPA investigation regarding public contracting in Venezuela. The client cooperated with enforcement authorities and assisted in the prosecution of several of his co-conspirators and pleaded guilty to FCPA related offenses. He avoided prison and was sentenced to probation.
- In December 2019, Homer Moyer testified as an expert witness on behalf of Royal Dutch Shell in a criminal trial in Milan, Italy. Mr. Moyer testified regarding Shell's anti-corruption compliance program in 2008-2011, including the extent to which the program complied with applicable best practices and legal requirements for anti-corruption compliance programs, and the program’s relevance to defenses under Italian laws. Royal Dutch Shell ultimately was acquitted at trial.
- We conducted a challenging investigation, on behalf of VEON (formerly VimpelCom), a major European telecommunications company, into activities in the ECA region, with the investigation including Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Georgia, Armenia, Russia, and other countries, as well as investigations by the U.S., Sweden, France, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. In addition to conducting the investigation, our team was lead counsel in negotiating one of the most significant resolutions since the passage of the FCPA and assisted the company throughout its three-year monitorship, which was successfully completed in 2020.
- Miller & Chevalier successfully served as U.S. counsel to U.K. seismic company Guralp Systems Limited (GSL) relating to its simultaneous disclosure to the DOJ and SFO of past corrupt payments to a South Korean official. Following the disclosure and cooperation of GSL, the DOJ subsequently launched an investigation that resulted in the arrest and conviction on money laundering charges of the South Korean official. Miller & Chevalier then represented GSL's executive chairman as a key witness in connection with the subsequent trial. Given its prompt disclosure and cooperation with the DOJ in its investigation, in August 2018 the DOJ issued a declination letter to GSL with no penalties or fines paid in the U.S.
- We were retained by the Audit Committee of one of the four principal oil and gas companies in Latin America to conduct an internal investigation into allegations by local prosecutors of approximately $4 billion in cost overruns in connection with the construction of a refinery by one of its subsidiaries, which included a focus on FCPA internal controls considerations and FCPA compliance remediation support.
- General Counsel, U.S. Department of Commerce
- Counselor to the Secretary, U.S. Department of Commerce
- Deputy General Counsel, U.S. Department of Commerce
- Director, Office of International Affairs, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
- Assistant United States Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Jersey
- Trial Attorney, Fraud Section, U.S. Department of Justice, Criminal Division
- Trial Attorney, Office of International Affairs, U.S. Department of Justice
- Trial Chief, Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia
- Senior Adviser for International Issues to SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
- Deputy Director, Office of International Affairs, U.S Securities and Exchange Commission
- Assistant Director, Office of International Affairs, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
- Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Maryland
- Assistant Chief Litigation Counsel, Division of Enforcement, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
- Investigations and Litigations Specialist, The World Bank's Integrity Vice Presidency
- Investigative Consultant, Inter-American Development Bank Office of Institutional Integrity (OII)
- Division General Counsel, gategroup
- Compliance Director, Latin America Region, and Global Enterprise Risk Counsel, Avon
- Senior Regional Counsel, Latin America, Citibank
- In-house Counsel, Monómeros Colombo Venezolanos, S.A
- General Counsel, SAIC General Motors Corporation Limited, Shanghai, China
- Lead Counsel, Global Compliance, General Motors Company
- Executive Director, Special Investigations & Anti-Corruption, General Motors Company
- Chambers Global: Corporate Crime & Investigations (USA), 2016 - 2022
- Chambers Global: Corporate Investigations/Anti-Corruption (Global-wide), 2017 - 2022
- Chambers Global: Corporate Investigations (Latin America-International Counsel), 2015 - 2022
- Chambers Global: FCPA (United States), 2015 - 2022
- Chambers Global: Investigations & Enforcement (International & Cross-Border) (USA), 2020 - 2022
- Chambers Global: International Trade (United States), 2005 - 2015
- Chambers Latin America: 2017 Corporate Investigations Law Firm of the Year
- Chambers Latin America: Corporate Crime & Investigations (International Counsel), 2015 - 2023
- Chambers USA: FCPA (Nationwide), 2014 - 2022
- Chambers USA: Corporate Crime & Investigations (Nationwide), 2015 - 2022
- Chambers USA: International Trade (Nationwide), 2005 - 2014
- Global Investigations Review: GIR 30 Top Global Investigations Practice, 2015 - 2022
- Global Investigations Review: Boutique or Regional Practice of the Year, 2016
- Just Anti-Corruption/Global Investigations Review: "Elite" in Washington, DC's FCPA Bar, 2016
- Latinvex: Latin America's Top 10 FCPA & Fraud Firm, 2015 - 2022
- Legal 500: Dispute Resolution: International Trade (U.S.), 2011, 2013 - 2022
- Legal 500 Latin America: International Firms: Compliance and Investigations, 2021 - 2023
- U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms": International Trade and Finance Law (National), 2011 - 2023
- U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms": International Trade and Finance Law (District of Columbia), 2011 - 2023
- Latin Lawyer Anti-Corruption Survey, Top Law Firm, 2013
- Main Justice Best FCPA Lawyers Client Service Award, Distinguished Service Award: Compliance Champions, 2013