"When is a Corporate Officer a 'Foreign Official'? Under the FCPA, a Foreign Corporation Can Still Be a Government Instrumentality. Does the Distinction Matter?"

On May 16, 2014, in Esquenazi v. United States, a United States federal appellate court upheld the criminal convictions of two American business owners under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA"), which prohibits payments to foreign government officials for the purpose of "obtaining or retaining business."  

This Stroock Special Bulletin looks at the Esquenazi decision, in which the court also provided some guidance – though not full clarity – on when employees of state-owned or controlled enterprises qualify as foreign officials under the FCPA.