Welcome to This Week In Compliance: GAN’s weekly news roundup, where we curate the latest stories on compliance and anti-corruption to keep you informed. This week, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations are at their lowest level in a decade. Read the full story and more news below:
FCPA Enforcement Actions at Lowest Level in a Decade
The number of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement actions are at their lowest level in a decade, according to a report released by the Standford University FCPA Clearinghouse. The report found that only 18 enforcement actions were filed in 2021, down from an average of 36 per year over the course of the last 10 years. 2018 saw a slight downward trend in enforcement actions, aside from an outlier year in 2020 where enforcement actions increased.
Italy, Greece, and Albania Dismantle International Migrant Smuggling Network
Italian, Greek, and Albanian authorities have arrested 29 members of an international crime network that had trafficked more than 1,100 migrants. Authorities believe that the suspects detained are part of a larger organized crime network actively engaged in smuggling migrants across transnational borders. The crime syndicate received payments in anonymous wire transfers and utilized existing sea trade routes and leisure yachts to allow migrants to illegally enter other countries. For more than 18 months, Europol aided the operation by facilitating the exchange of information between international authorities and coordinating their operational meetings.
US Bans Mexican Fishing Vessels Over Illegal Fishing, Environmental Protections
Beginning February 7th, 2022, Mexican fishing vessels will be denied port access in the Gulf of Mexico over concerns of illegal fishing and shirking environmental protection protocols, according to a statement released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA). The statement cites repeated violations of allowed fishing protocols and environmental protections, including endangering protected species.
Starbucks Drops Covid-19 Vaccination, Testing Requirements
Starbucks announced this week that it will no longer require its U.S.-based workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing as a condition of employment. The company made the statement in a message to workers this week that it would change the requirements based on the Supreme Court's recent decision to block the Biden administration's private employer vaccine mandate. While the company is dropping the requirement, the statement released this week did mention that the company continues to "believe strongly in the spirit and intent of the mandate”.
ZoomInfo Recruits Former U.K. Data-Protection Regulator as Chief Compliance Officer
ZoomInfo, the U.S. based business-intelligence platform, has recruited Simon McDougall, a former U.K. data protection regulator, as its first Chief Compliance Officer. The company has aggressively expanded its business in the U.K. and Europe and moved much of its senior leadership team to London to support the expansion. ZoomInfo provides business intelligence and database software used by sales teams around the world. The hiring of McDougall signals the companies first standalone compliance function, which until not resided with the general counsel of the organization.