The Group has represented numerous individuals and corporations in both the public and private sectors in federal and state investigations and prosecutions in New Jersey and across the country. Our Group has the capacity to conduct internal investigations for corporations to detect improprieties, as well as to recommend strategies for implementing compliance programs to better position the corporate client to deal with law enforcement authorities. We have specialized experience in addressing the complex questions that arise when both corporations and their employees require legal counsel in the context of white collar investigations.
Our Group's focus includes defending against investigations and prosecutions of alleged government procurement and environmental violations; political and commercial corruption; and various forms of fraud including bank, tax and commercial matters. We also are active in defending against the numerous civil proceedings, including actions by federal agencies.
The Group considers some of its most valuable services to be the numerous criminal prosecutions it has prevented. We are cognizant that frequently the most damage to the reputation of a corporation or an individual occurs as a result of an indictment, and not necessarily a conviction. Accordingly, because of its knowledge and experience, our Group is often called upon to dissuade prosecution.
International Human Rights Compliance Group
The International Human Rights Compliance Group (IHRC) counsels multinationals, both foreign and domestic, in a number of areas: assessments, governance, transactions and dispute resolution or litigation. The Group has the capability to draw from any of the firm’s comprehensive menu of legal practice areas to meet a client’s requirements for efficiency and cost management. It can assist clients in these areas:
- Perform risk assessments, audits, internal investigations;
- Implementation of prevention programs, including creating codes of conduct, internal policies, training and complaint procedures;
- Assist clients with public responses and inquiries from media, government personnel and nongovernmental organizations;
- Drafting of memoranda and agreements with third parties and government agencies;
- Advise clients on due diligence and risk mitigation;
- Represent parties on human rights risks in M&A and other transactions;
- Defend clients in disputes and litigation in state and federal courts, before administrative agencies and the UN;
- Identify and supervise counsel in foreign jurisdictions;
- Educate clients about the extent to which they may have legal “exposure” based on the conduct of companies with which they “partner”.
The IHRC addresses the need for multinational companies to assess market entry or ongoing business operations through a human rights impact assessment as a matter of corporate due diligence. Such assessments have largely been done by companies in the mining or oil exploration (extractive) industries when they were entering a host country that was economically underdeveloped or conflict ridden and, as a result, had few human rights safeguards. The recent human rights exposures of BP’s Gulf spill and Google’s censorship issues in China have changed the due diligence calculus: a developed country like the US can be a victim of human rights abuses, and abuses can occur in any industry, like search engine technology.
Companies in all industries face far more subtle, but serious intersections with human rights issues, like censorship and local government laws and customs. And, firms coming into the US or another economically developed country to do business, need to employ a human rights impact assessment (HRIA). For example, the connections of even one multinational company executive with a questionable or sanctioned government or practice may be perceived of as transgressing human rights standards and may stop a deal or a market entry.”
In a recent article, "BP Executives’ Human Rights Miscalculation: Have They Bet the Company?" published by DiversityInc, Chair Raymond Brown suggests reasons why BP failed to do an HRIA: one being that the US, with its developed economy and regulatory safeguards, appeared an unlikely human rights victim. The article can be viewed at: http://www.diversityinc.com/article/7922/BP-Executives-HumanRights-Miscalculation-Have-They-Bet-the-Company/.
Our Group is widely respected. Its members have lectured and written extensively on various compliance and criminal law topics and are also active in professional bar associations and in academics. Above all, what distinguishes our Group is the attention, substantial experience and energy that it brings to bear in defending its clients.