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Paul, Weiss Achieves Favorable Resolution in Unique FCPA Investigation of Nonprofit Organization
Paul, Weiss recently secured a complete victory for a large nonprofit organization that provides humanitarian relief and assistance overseas. The organization was being investigated by the Fraud Section of the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ) for potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, in one of the first FCPA investigations by the DOJ of a nonprofit entity. The investigation had significant implications not only for the organization, but also for other nonprofit entities whose overseas activities could potentially come under scrutiny if the DOJ determined that the FCPA applied to charitable activities in addition to commercial activities.
After a five-month review analyzing conduct in multiple countries, Paul, Weiss presented its findings and legal analysis to the DOJ at the beginning of June, specifically requesting that the DOJ formally close its investigation. The DOJ recently issued an official declination letter, stating that the DOJ was satisfied that the business nexus element of the statute was not met. Receiving a formal closure letter from the DOJ is unusual and is a significant victory. The organization has not issued a public statement.