The latest update to Violation Tracker adds 2,500 new federal and state cases in various categories. These include product safety violations, bribery of foreign governments (Foreign Corrupt Practices Act), economic sanction violations, banking violations, and others. The total penalties paid in these cases, including completed class actions lawsuits, reach almost $2 billi
The companies involved in these cases span multiple industries, but the highest violators exist in the tech and finance sectors.
Apple accounts for two of the top 10 offenses for product safety violations with a total of $360 million in penalties. In one case, Apple agreed to pay $50 million to settle a class-action lawsuit for concealing a known defective keyboard on certain MacBook models. The tech giant also settled for $310 million over allegations that software updates slowed the iPhone’s performance.
Another leading actor, Wells Fargo Bank, was penalized $67.8 million by the Federal Reserve Board for violating economic sanctions regulations. Wells Fargo’s lack of oversight allowed one of its subsidiary banks to provide a trade finance platform to a foreign bank that used the platform to process approximately $532 million in prohibited transactions. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. additionally agreed to pay $30 million to the Office of Foreign Assets Control for related sanction violations.
Consumer Advocacy Center Inc, doing business as Premier Student Loan Center, settled with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for violating the Consumer Financial Protection Act and Telemarketing Sales Rule by deceiving thousands of federal-student-loan borrowers. Premier will provide restitution to over 87,000 consumers totaling $95 million.
LM Ericsson, a multinational telecommunications company, has pled guilty and agreed to pay a criminal penalty of $206 million for breaching a prior Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA). The DPA was put in place for violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) through bribery, falsification of administrative records, and failure to comply with internal accounting requirements in multiple countries.
Along with recent cases, the update includes the addition of 1,400 class-action and multi-district lawsuits involving price-fixing and related anti-competitive practices. Those cases date back to 2000. A report about those cases as well as federal and state price-fixing prosecutions already contained in Violation Tracker has just been published and is available here.
Violation Tracker now contains more than 557,000 entries dating back to the beginning of 2000. Total monetary penalties amount to $917 billion.