Anti-Bribery Compliance: Money Laundering

No different than the use of the FCPA’s accounting and record-keeping provisions to address foreign bribery, money laundering statutes are being increasingly used in situations  to buttress FCPA cases.   For example, after all of the litigation in United States v. Hoskins, the conviction was solely based on the money laundering charges.1

Reliance is also being placed increasingly on money laundering statutes to address situations where the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions may not apply.  Indeed, money laundering is used as a means of pursuing recipients of bribes.  Recently, in United States v. Inniss,2 the bribery of a Barbados official was involved.  No violations of the FCPA were alleged.  The sole substantive charges were premised on money laundering.

Executives of an insurance company based in Bermuda were alleged to have bribed a Barbados official to use his influence so that a government agency in Barbados would renew its insurance policy.  The funds were funneled to the foreign official through a U.S. bank account where a friend of the official was the authorized representative.3   The friend re-directed the funds to the official.4  At the same time, the entity associated with the bank account issued false invoices to the Bermuda insurance company to ostensibly support the transfer of funds to the bank account.5

The charges were premised on 18 U.S.C. § 1956.  The predicate offense fell under 18 U.S.C. § 1956(C)(7)(B)(iv), which involves situations “where the financial transaction occurs “in whole or in part in the United States” and involves “an offense against a foreign nation involving . . . [the] bribery of a public official, or the misappropriation, theft, or embezzlement of public funds by or for the benefit of a public official.”  In particular, the indictment cited an offense against a foreign nation and referenced the Prevention of Corruption Act of Barbados as the predicate act.6

In a corresponding superseding indictment, a violation of the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA was not charged.7  However, the anti-bribery provisions were cited along with “an offense against a foreign nation” as predicate acts for  alleging money laundering violations for the individuals involved with facilitating the bribe payments to the Barbados official.8 


1Ruling on Defendant’s Rule 29(C) and Rule 33 Motions, United States v. Hoskins, No. 12-cr-238 (D. Conn., filed Feb. 26, 2020), ECF No. 617.  An appeal is currently pending on the remaining money laundering charges.

2Indictment, United States v. Inniss, Case No. 18-cr-00134 (E.D.N.Y., filed Mar. 15, 2018).

3Id., at ¶¶ 13-15.

4Id., at ¶¶  15, 18.

5Id., at ¶  15.

6Id., at ¶¶ 19-21.

715 U.S.C. § 78dd-2.

8Superseding Indictment, at ¶¶ 23, 25, Case No. 18-cr-00134 (E.D.N.Y., filed Aug. 22, 2018).

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