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Up the Ladder and Out the Door: Saying "No" to the CEO

David A. Delman and Paul A. Bruno
The International Lawyer
Vol. 46, No. 4 (WINTER 2012), pp. 1007-1026
Published by: American Bar Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23643949
Page Count: 20
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Up the Ladder and Out the Door: Saying "No" to the CEO
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Abstract

This article addresses the responsibilities of counsel when confronted with credible evidence of corporate malfeasance and the consequences counsel may suffer if compelled to discharge the obligations established in Sarbanes Oxley and the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct (MRPC) 1.13 and 1.6. Set in the context of a mega mining construction project in Latin America, the article leads the reader through a hypothetical case involving international commercial, governmental, and union bribery, analyzing whether such conduct violates the U.S. Travel Act, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the U.K. Bribery Act, and the Taft-Hartley Act. If so, the article then considers what counsel must do if his or her employer persists in illegal conduct. As a result of this analysis, this article argues for a change in U.S. securities regulation to afford the same protections to counsel as those given to the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and external auditors; namely that a SEC Form 8-K be filed upon the departure of the Chief Legal Officer (CLO).

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