On April 14, 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice made a long-awaited move towards enhanced transparency into the corporate compliance monitorship selection process in launching a new webpage that lists the names of all independent compliance monitors for the Fraud Section’s thirteen active monitorships. Seven of the active monitorships are associated with the FCPA Unit, five with Market Integrity and Major Frauds, and one with Health Care Fraud.
The move to publish names comes after years of criticism–and in some cases, litigation–surrounding the confidentiality of DOJ’s selection process. As reported previously on this blog, in March 2018, a D.C. federal judge ordered the Department of Justice to turn over the names of prospective monitors nominated to oversee the corporate compliance programs of fifteen companies found to be in violation of the FCPA. While recognizing that these individuals have “more than a de minimis privacy interest in their anonymity,” the court found that any such privacy interest was outweighed by the public’s interest in learning their identities. Prior to that, in the Fall of 2016, a federal district court in the Southern District of New York appointed its own monitor, rejecting the three candidates proposed by the government and the defendant company. The court concluded that two of the three candidates were under-qualified and had not been fully vetted (one was a full-time law student).