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Mary Jo White’s Leniency Only For The Pure Of Heart

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If you aren’t going to be sincere when confessing all of your employees’ sins to the SEC, don’t bother: Mary Jo White can tell, and it will just make her angrier.

“There is, of course, cooperation and then there is cooperation, just as there are compliance programs that look great on paper but are not strongly enforced. We know the difference,” Ms. White said,according to prepared remarks….

Attorneys representing companies are often skeptical of the benefits of self-reporting potential violations, especially when the likelihood authorities will find out about the potential violations independently is deemed low.

Ms. White, who previously spent years in private practice, brought up this approach, cautioning that “with our new whistleblower program…the SEC is more likely than ever to learn of the misconduct through another channel….”

“Make it clear from the outset that the board’s expectation is that any internal investigation will search for misconduct wherever and however high up it occurred,” she said.

Mary Jo White on How to Cooperate with the SEC [WSJ]

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