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Perhaps in this current time of crisis and unprecedented government response, it is as important now as at any time that citizens trust that government officials’ decisions are made free of improper influence or self-dealing. Federal, state, and local decision-making will undoubtedly and significantly affect every aspect of our lives and work. While community vigilance beyond law enforcement efforts is required to maintain public integrity, federal prosecutors nevertheless have a “wide berth” to combat corruption by elected and appointed officials. United States v. Rosen, 716 F.3d 691, 694 (2d Cir. 2013).
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By Steve Sozio, Rebecca Martin, Rajeev Muttreja and Mark Rotatori
There will likely be some fraud in connection with the pandemic-related programs that should be pursued by the DOJ and the Inspectors General, who have said they will keep close eyes on these programs. They will have no shortage of targets, given the many recipients of government funds, and the breadth of the requisite certifications.
By Harry Sandick and Devon Hercher
In recent years, we have seen the DOJ expand its international focus, as it looks to punish foreign nationals, often for conduct that occurred almost entirely outside of the territorial borders of the United States. DOJ’s eagerness, however, has not been matched by judicial enthusiasm concerning the extraterritorial application of U.S. law.
By Marjorie Peerce and Justin Kerner
Storage and Hauling Companies Take Note
Imagine that it’s Spring 2020 and you run a warehousing company and you discover that your warehouse contains containers of goods that could help combat the spread of the COVID-19 virus — masks, medical gowns, gloves or other personal protective equipment (PPE). Or imagine you own a trucking company and learn that your drivers are delivering pallets of hand sanitizer and disinfectants to a residential address. What, if any, liability might you have if it turns out a customer is hoarding PPE?
By Jacqueline C. Wolff, Scott T. Lashway, and Matthew M.K. Stein
In times of crisis, criminal activity — particularly crimes involving theft and fraud — tend to spike. There is no reason to believe that the Covid-19 pandemic and the unrest in the financial markets will be any different. An important difference for company counsel, however, will be in how the malfeasance, negligence or wrongdoing can be investigated.