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In recent years, practitioners have observed a tension between criminal enforcement of the broadly written terms of the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890 and the modern Supreme Court’s notions of statutory interpretation and due process in the criminal law context. A certiorari petition filed in late August in Sanchez et al. v. United States, No. 19-288, asks the Supreme Court to address this tension, as embodied in the judge-made per se rule. The rule, a longstanding feature of antitrust doctrine, provides that certain categories of agreements among competitors are barred without further inquiry regarding whether, in fact, they unreasonably restrained trade. The question presented in Sanchez is “whether the operation of the per se rule in criminal antitrust cases violates the constitutional prohibition — grounded in the Fifth and Sixth Amendments — against instructing juries that certain facts presumptively establish an element of a crime.”
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By Steve Sozio, Rebecca Martin, Rajeev Muttreja and Mark Rotatori
With the federal government appropriating more than $2 trillion for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, plaintiffs’ lawyers, regulators and politicians have trumpeted the search for whistleblowers — many of whom will try to cash in on perceived fraud in the funding programs created by the CARES Act and other enactments.
By Carolyn H. Kendall
Compliance Programs Offer Companies an Opportunity to Mitigate Risk
This article outlines the principles of corporate criminal liability, including the factors prosecutors consider when making charging decisions, and the potentially available sanctions in light of applicable U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and offers strategies for minimizing risk, including lessons from recent criminal enforcement actions.
By Daniel R. Alonso, Preston Burton and Meredith Leeson
IGs have been part of the federal landscape for more than 40 years, so why all the fuss now? The answer is that they are a key element of the government’s built-in mechanisms for protecting the nation’s public treasury, and a relief package of this scope strongly indicates that the IGs and the new oversight bodies will spend many years scrutinizing funds spent under it.
By Christopher M. Ferguson
This article discusses what tools the government has for pursuing seemingly undeserving PPP borrowers, the obstacles to bringing such cases, and the factors that may influence the government’s decision in pursuing criminal or civil cases.