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2020 was another record-setting year in U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement. In 2019, corporate FCPA enforcement set an all-time high with over $2.65 billion in fines and penalties. Additionally, that year, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) imposed the two largest FCPA corporate penalties, including the first billion-dollar settlement in FCPA history. In 2020, corporate FCPA enforcement eclipsed the 2019 record with $2.78 billion in total fines and penalties and set the record for the largest single FCPA penalty, which was a $1.6 billion settlement. 2020 also saw an increase in multi-jurisdictional cases, with foreign governments receiving over $5 billion in global anti-corruption settlements related to FCPA cases.

In addition, the government charged 36 individuals for FCPA and FCPA-related conduct, representing one of the highest numbers of individual prosecutions ever pursued in a year. The last three years have seen record individual enforcement related to FCPA matters. This development matches DOJ’s rhetoric that it will continue to strongly pursue individual prosecutions. 

Following is a snapshot of 2020 FCPA enforcement:

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) Enforcement 2020: Year in Review