• Privilege,  Wiretapping

    When Your Lawyer Dimes You In A Wireless World: Undercover Techniques and White-Collar Investigations

    It has become commonplace to note the ascendancy in white-collar investigations of techniques previously reserved for investigations of organized crime and violent, life-and-death offenses. Three recent articles bring the issue around again. The New York Times notes that More Federal Agencies Are Using Undercover Operations: The federal government has significantly expanded undercover operations in recent years, with officers from at least 40 agencies posing as business people, welfare recipients, political protesters and even doctors or ministers to ferret out wrongdoing, records and interviews show. . . . Undercover work, inherently invasive and sometimes dangerous, was once largely the domain of the F.B.I. and a few other law enforcement agencies at the federal level.…

  • Internal Investigations,  Privilege

    It’s Okay To Smell A Rat: Internal Investigations, Attorney-Client Privilege and the KBR Decision

    Post-recession, we are living through an era of regulators’ grimaces and prosecutors’ giddiness. Editorialists and bloggers want business scalps, especially scalps of individuals (as opposed to simple monetary fines for corporations), and most especially scalps of those in banking and finance.  In the wake of the GM report and other stories about lawyers, the role of business lawyers is as suspect in the public mind as it has been for decades.  It’s as though everybody smells a rat. On the other hand, faced with ever-increasing and increasingly complex regulation, companies’ need to conduct self-reviews and internal investigations is unavoidable. Indeed, in many industries, the governing set of rules require companies to…