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White Collar and Investigations

Companies and their employees are facing increased scrutiny from state and federal administrative and criminal investigations, congressional inquiries as well as the potential for “parallel proceedings” such as administrative investigations, derivative suits and whistleblower cases. Focused, discrete, and strategic intervention by our White Collar and Investigations Team, early in an investigation, may preclude or limit costly civil liability and criminal exposure for our clients. At Williams Mullen, we call upon our attorneys’ wide-ranging experience at the investigative, trial and appellate levels to advise clients on how to effectively respond to all forms of investigations.

Experienced Trial Attorneys with a Global Focus 
The White Collar and Investigations Team is comprised of former Assistant United States Attorneys, military prosecutors, litigators and seasoned criminal defense attorneys who, based on their respective backgrounds, skills and knowledge of the government, are well positioned to represent our clients. Our White Collar and Investigations Team works closely with our other practice areas that provide substantive experience in areas such as environmental, labor and employment, financial services, international law, immigration, government contracts and procurement, securities, health care, tax, and cyber law.

Our attorneys have collectively tried hundreds of cases to verdict. We have appeared in federal district and appellate courts throughout the United States, numerous state courts, and have conducted investigations and arbitrations around the world; represented clients before most federal agencies, international tribunals, and before state Attorneys General in many states; and negotiated deferred and non-prosecution resolutions on behalf of clients so that the matters do not even reach the courthouse steps. We have worked cases from their investigative infancy and have also stepped in at the last minute as trial counsel to successfully resolve the matter before a jury.

Our attorneys represent Fortune 1000 corporations, directors and officers, public officials, and professionals such as attorneys, accountants and physicians. For over three decades, we have represented clients in state and federal investigations relating to: 

  • Antitrust enforcement 
  • Banking and Financial Services
  • Copyright and trademark infringement 
  • Criminal tax 
  • Environmental enforcement
  • Export Controls
  • False Claims Act 
  • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)
  • Lacey Act 
  • Government contracts and procurement fraud 
  • Health care fraud 
  • Immigration and workplace enforcement 
  • Public corruption
  • RICO 
  • Sarbanes-Oxley 
  • Securities fraud 
  • USA Patriot Act

Internal Investigations & Compliance

For companies and individuals facing an investigation, we provide full-service crisis management from press strategy to dealing with potential collateral consequences including debarment and licensing issues. More importantly, we provide internal investigations and compliance services before the government has made a decision whether to file criminal or civil charges.

Whether in response to a grand jury subpoena or as the result of a self-initiated inquiry, an internal investigation can be a valuable tool in determining what, if any, exposure our client may face. Should there be wrongdoing by the corporation or an individual employee, our team can counsel the client and tailor a plan for remedial action while defending the client in any administrative or criminal proceeding that may result. In some cases, cooperating with the investigative agency is appropriate. In other cases, a vigorous defense is appropriate. Our White Collar Investigations and Litigation attorneys assist clients in determining the best course of action based on the unique facts of the case.

Moreover, our team assists clients in the development and implementation of both curative and forward-looking compliance programs designed to respond to all phases of an investigation and prevent costly criminal or civil violations. A well-tailored compliance program may assist in the successful resolution of a federal investigation and limit the client's fines and penalties under the United States Sentencing Guidelines. A key part of our team’s practice is to provide preventative assistance, helping clients avoid costly exposure to criminal and civil liability before any wrongdoing occurs.

eDiscovery and Information Governance

Internal investigations may involve enormous quantities of electronic data, and intense pressure to get answers fast. The White Collar & Investigations Team is well positioned to leverage the rapid fact development techniques employed by the firm's eDiscovery and Information Governance team. With our innovative and technologically advanced approach, we are able quickly to implement the proper legal-hold procedures, collect the relevant data, and analyze the critical facts in a fraction of the time required in the traditional linear investigative review process. This increased speed and efficiency allows the team to stay ahead of the investigation and decreases both cost and time to resolution.

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

Our clients turn to us when they need counsel with significant experience in matters involving the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and other anti-corruption laws.  The firm’s professionals have served as federal prosecutors, as defense counsel, and as general corporate and securities counsel to public and regulated companies, in numerous matters involving the FCPA.  For over three decades, we have represented clients in FCPA matters including:

  • criminal investigations and defense
  • Congressional investigations
  • internal corporate investigations
  • anti-corruption compliance programs
  • FCPA and anti-corruption training for employees
  • due diligence on overseas transactions, joint ventures, and third parties
  • advising management, board and audit committees regarding a wide range of specific FCPA or anticorruption questions  and issues

Our reach goes wherever our client’s business goes.  As a result, our professionals have conducted FCPA internal investigations, risk assessments, due diligence and training “on the ground” in many different countries in the Americas, Asia, Africa and Europe.  We have represented large public companies, but also mid- and small-cap public and private companies and individuals, spanning industries including telecommunications, agriculture, government contracts, oil and gas, retail, and transportation and logistics.  

We leverage our attorneys’ broad range of experience to provide clients with day-to-day anti-corruption counseling, advice about establishing or maintaining compliance programs, and to represent clients in internal investigations, government investigations and enforcement actions, due diligence and risk assessments.

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