Anti-Bribery and Corruption

Corruption is a major risk for companies, which often has serious consequences such as the engagement of criminal liability.

Corruption, like all other breaches of probity, exposes companies to criminal prosecution by numerous prosecution authorities, including the French National Financial Prosecutor's Office, the UK Serious Fraud Office and the US Department of Justice.

Although these prosecutions can sometimes be concluded by negotiated justice agreements between the authorities and the companies, by way of a judicial public interest agreement ("CJIP") or a deferred prosecution agreement, the criminal risk is significant and everything must be done to limit it.

Companies are also exposed to heavy civil consequences (e.g. cancellation of contracts tainted by corruption) through arbitration, which has become a real means of combating corruption (whether at the stage of the award or of the review of arbitration awards by the trial judges).

In addition, in order to prevent and detect corruption, the implementation of an anti-corruption compliance program with a code of conduct, a risk mapping, staff training, whistle-blower mechanism and internal investigation appears essential. The latter is moreover imposed by more and more extraterritorial legislation, such as the Sapin 2 law, the UK Bribery Act or the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

As such, we provide advice and expertise to best meet the needs of companies, whether at the stage of prevention of corruption, in the event of prosecution by the authorities, or during allegations of corruption in arbitration proceedings.

Your challenges

Effective and appropriate tools for the prevention and detection of corruption

While the implementation of an anti-bribery compliance program is a legal obligation for certain companies, it also strengthens their reputation by securing the risk of criminal proceedings.

Handling internal corruption alerts

The handling of alerts must meet the highest standards of confidentiality protection and give rise to a rapid and effective response to end the practice and take appropriate steps against the perpetrators and improve the prevention of corruption.

Corruption risk analysis in a proposed acquisition of a target company

Now, acquiring companies can be held liable for acts committed by the acquired company. The acquisition of a company must be preceded by a full anti-corruption due diligence.

Identifying and responding to any deficiencies in the companies' anti-bribery programme

Improving an anti-bribery compliance program is an on-going and essential process. Each identified deficiency should be an opportunity to make the necessary changes to ensure that the identified incident does not happen again.

Support and defence in multi-jurisdictional proceedings

The company faces possible criminal prosecution, possibly by a plurality of prosecuting authorities (DOJ, SFO, PNF) in the context of international criminal cooperation.

Improving the compliance programme after the conclusion of a negotiated justice agreement

Under a negotiated justice agreement relating to bribery, the company may be required to take steps to improve its compliance programme.

Our way

Fifteen years of experience in supporting the prevention and detection of corruption

We have acted as an independent anti-corruption compliance expert and monitor in the context of resolution agreements negotiated between global French groups and the World Bank.

Expertise on the most effective measures to prevent and detect corruption within the business

We provide our clients expertise in establishing robust and effective anti-bribery compliance programmes. We assess and propose modifications as need be, to codes of conduct, risk mapping, alert line procedures, third party assessment (due diligence, monitoring), accounting and financial audits and controls, or to carry out all employee training and awareness raising.

Conducting internal investigations with the most innovative tools to reach the optimal solution

We conduct extensive internal investigations sometimes supported by artificial intelligence to determine the level of corporate risk, assess the adequacy of compliance programs, and build the most favourable litigation strategies for our clients when faced with prosecution.

Tailor-made support before the prosecution and control authorities

We assist our clients in sensitive and complex criminal, civil or administrative proceedings related with corruption and having an international dimension. We defend their interests during negotiations with the criminal prosecution authorities (PNF, DOJ, SFO) or during inspections conducted by the French Anti-Corruption Agency (AFA).

A strong inter-professional and international network of trusted partners

Thanks to our trusted partners (experienced and specialised foreign attorneys, forensics, strategy and risk management consultancies, alert processing system providers), we offer our clients the most comprehensive service possible at the lowest cost.

Quality intervention in the handling of corruption allegations in international commercial arbitration

We assist our clients in arbitration proceedings, exequatur or annulment of awards, in particular when allegations of corruption are raised before the arbitration tribunal. Our knowledge of both arbitration proceedings and criminal issues allows us to have a global and precise vision to resolve such legal issues.

Clients' stories

What position to adopt with the prosecuting authorities in response to allegations of corruption?

Multi-jurisdictional investigation with concurrent jurisdiction and international criminal cooperation between the prosecution authorities regarding allegations of corruption
Read Story
"Allegations of corruption are used at several stages of arbitration proceedings and have become a means of procedural strategy in recent years"
Salomé Garnier
Accolades Navacelle
Stéphane de Navacelle once again in 2021 picked in Chambers Europe ranking
Category Corporate Compliance & Investigations in France
Sources say: "He is incredibly diplomatic and good at navigating complicated clients."
Julie Zorrilla selected in
Women in Investigations 2021 as
Clémentine Duverne confirmed in 2021 as
Future Thought Leader in
Stéphane de Navacelle selected by peers
for inclusion in the 12th Edition of The Best Lawyers in France in
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by The Legal 500 as
one of the top law firms in
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by Le Point
identifed as one of the Tier 1 law firm in
NAVACELLE recognized in 2021
by Décideurs Magazine
Criminal Tax Law
Guide Litigation & Arbitration
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by Global Law Expert
as International White Collar Crime Law Firm of the Year in

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