It is not uncommon for various government agencies and offices to investigate the same company, particularly following a major scandal. We have grown accustomed to seeing simultaneous investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”), sometimes followed by indictments and complaints from both. When the SEC and DOJ are interested in the same or overlapping subject-matter, the government offices frequently coordinate their investigations and share information. The August 20, 2020 decision in In re: Volkswagen “Clean Diesel” Mktg., Sales Practices, and Prods. Liab. Litig., MDL No. 2672 CRB (JSC) by the United States District Court for the Northern District of California (“the Opinion”), dismissing a significant portion of the SEC’s federal securities claims against Volkswagen as having been previously released by the DOJ, serves as an important reminder for why such coordination is important and how defendants may take advantage of the failure to coordinate, as did Volkswagen.
‘Enforcement 40’ for 2020
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