Reconsidering Corporate Criminal Prosecution

For more than a decade, the Justice Department morphed its approach to corporate crime, eschewing criminal prosecutions in favor of deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements that allowed large corporations to avoid the ignominy of criminal convictions. The trend began during the Bush administration and became so dominant during the Obama administration that the Criminal Division of the Justice Department entered deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements in more than two-thirds of the corporate cases it resolved.

There seemingly were no crimes that did not qualify for corporate absolution. The Justice Department entered a non-prosecution agreement in the Upper Big Branch mine … Read more

The Erosion of Corporate Criminal Liability

Over the last two years, there has been significant media coverage of Securities and Exchange Commission settlements that contain no admissions of wrongdoing—sometimes referred to as “Neither Admit, Nor Deny” agreements—and the lack of criminal charges for the 2008 financial meltdown.  Both are troubling developments given the role that Wall Street played in bringing about the Great Recession.

But there has been far less scrutiny of a disturbing shift in corporate prosecution policy that began in the Bush administration and has accelerated during the Obama administration:  the increased use of deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements to address corporate wrongdoing.  Under … Read more

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Editor's Tweet: Michigan Law's David Uhlmann on The Erosion of Corporate Criminal Liability http://wp.me/p2Xx5U-1Av