Credit Suisse Settles Bribery Allegations With SEC but DOJ Focuses on Investor Fraud

In the FCPA world, it can take quite a while for the other shoe to drop. In late 2018, eight individuals, including three former bankers at Credit Suisse Group AG (Credit Suisse), were indicted for their alleged involvement in a $2-billion fraud and kickback scheme involving the development of a tuna fishing fleet and other maritime projects in Mozambique. Almost three years later, the bank has now settled with the DOJ, SEC, the United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority and the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority in a $547‑million coordinated global settlement that includes $200 million of loan forgiveness. In this first article about the settlement, we look at the underlying risky transactions and investigate how the company avoided FCPA charges from the DOJ. The second article will consider whether Credit Suisse nabbed a good deal and how it might have fared differently if its settlement came after the recent announcement of DOJ policy changes. See “U.S. Indicts Eight Foreign Nationals in Connection With a $2‑Billion Scheme in Mozambique” (Apr. 17, 2019).

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