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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 90535 Find in a Library
Title: Corporate Criminal Liability and the Role of Counsel (From Business Crimes - A Guide for Corporate and Defense Counsel, P 65-85, 1982, Jeffrey Glekel, ed. - See NCJ-90533)
Author(s): J Glekel
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 21
Sponsoring Agency: Practicing Law Institute
New York, NY 10019
Sale Source: Practicing Law Institute
810 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10019
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This discussion identifies some considerations that may be helpful to corporate counsel confronted with the possibility of criminal investigation and prosecution of the corporation they represent, notably the prosecutor's perspective and the role of the corporate counsel.
Abstract: The first step in analyzing the vulnerability of a corporate client to criminal prosecution is to recognize the advantages and disadvantages of such prosecutions from the prosecutor's perspective. Advantages are (1) the ease with which criminal liability may be imposed upon corporations, (2) the relative efficiency of the Federal criminal justice system, and (3) criminal prosecution being an appropriate expression of society's view of the seriousness of some corporate violations of health, safety, and environmental standards. Some factors inhibiting the criminal prosecution of corporations are the failure to further any legitimate goal of the criminal justice system, the danger of undermining the efficacy of the criminal sanction, and the insufficiency of criminal sanctions against a corporate entity. The role of corporate counsel is first to analyze the consequences of criminal prosecution, such as the stigma attached to a criminal prosecution, the serious collateral legal consequences of a criminal conviction, the automatic finding of liability in civil actions after criminal convictions, and the impact on the morale and cohesiveness of the corporation. The corporate counsel can take preventive measures, including identifying criminal actions taken against similar corporations so as to take action to preclude such liability, and, in the case of actual prosecutions, identifying the approach which will serve the corporation best, whether it is through plea bargaining or requiring the government to prove its case at trial. Thirty-three footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Corporate criminal liability; Defense counsel; Defense preparation; Plea negotiations; Prosecution
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