Stanford Law School database provides insight on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
“Foreign corruption is a pervasive and growing problem,” says JOSEPH A. GRUNDFEST, a professor of law and business at Stanford Law School. Grundfest led a team that recently launched a free public database that fosters awareness of the fight against global corruption.
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Clearinghouse allows users to search and sort data related to enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), which makes it unlawful for certain classes of persons and entities with connections to the United States to make payments to foreign government officials to assist in obtaining or retaining business. In recent years, the U.S. government has intensified its efforts to combat corruption on a global scale.
Grundfest said many people are unaware of the magnitude of the penalties imposed on organizations violating the FCPA. To date, the U.S. government has initiated more than 400 FCPA-related enforcement actions implicating transactions in at least 100 countries and generating $7 billion in fines. Companies contemplating international business transactions, those trying to understand the consequences of an FCPA violation, scholars studying trends in international enforcement actions, and lawyers and judges involved in FCPA legal disputes will all find the database helpful. “It’s a new tool for exploring the operation of one of the world’s most powerful weapons in the fight against global corruption,” Grundfest said.
The database was primarily built by Stanford Law School researchers with help from many contributors and extensive input from attorneys at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. Read a Q&A with Grundfest about the database on the Law School’s website.