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New leadership, similar enforcement agenda

Jaclyn Jaeger | July 5, 2017

Even amid an uncertain, disorderly—and arguably, botched—changing of the guards at the Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission, the agencies’ enforcement priorities can be summed up with one adage: the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Under the Obama Administration, both the SEC and DoJ aggressively pursued violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and other white-collar crime; focused more acutely on individual accountability; and increased their efforts to credit companies with robust compliance programs when considering prosecutions. Expect those trends to continue under the leadership of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and SEC Chair Jay Clayton.

Although it’s still early in the game, with many leadership appointments announced in just the last few months, one telltale sign of likely enforcement priorities can be garnered from public remarks made by Sessions and Clayton themselves.

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