When it comes to making a reward submission under the Dodd-Frank program, SEC whistleblowers should not let perfect evidence be the enemy of the good. International whistleblowers are eligible for large rewards for reporting corporate bribery under the Dodd-Frank reward program. Often clients who are looking to report violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) will ask whether they should file if they do not have “smoking gun” emails or recordings. The short answer is yes if they have information detailing FCPA violations or have personal knowledge of the company bribing government officials.
Under the Dodd-Frank program, it is best to be the first to report a particular scheme to the SEC because if a whistleblower triggers an investigation, then he or she is in an excellent position to collect a reward once the case resolves. Moreover, one never knows what the SEC is already investigating. So if a someone is considering reporting a healthcare bribery scheme involving ABC Pharma in Czech Republic and has witnessed the violations but has no documentary proof, such as emails or spreadsheets, he may believe he should wait until he has obtained documentary proof. But the SEC already may be investigating ABC Pharma in neighboring Slovakia and would be very receptive in extending its investigation into the Czech Republic based on the client’s personal knowledge. In this example, there is significant upside to filing – even without documentary evidence – because the SEC already may be investigating ABC Pharma. The person can always supplement his or her information at a later point if he or she obtains relevant emails and documents.
If anyone has information about any SEC-regulated company (or one of its local affiliates, subsidiaries, or agents) bribing government officials and would like to discuss making a confidential or anonymous submission under the Dodd-Frank program, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free consultation. For more information and details about how the reward program applies to FCPA whistleblowers, please click here.