Avoiding FIFA’s Footsteps
By Eric H. Sussman and Cynthia Catlett (Managing Director, Global Risk and Investigations, FTI Consulting)
The Games will arrive to Brazil against the backdrop of a prior International Olympic Committee (“IOC”) scandal and two separate, wide-ranging and ongoing corruption scandals. Domestically, the Petrobras Lava Jato scandal has resulted in the arrests of dozens of executives and political leaders, and caused widespread ripples in Brazil’s economy. Internationally, the investigations into the Federation Internationale de Football Association (“FIFA”), most notably by the U.S. government, may have implications for those involved with the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. Collectively, these scandals are instructive to global companies regarding the corruption-related risks of doing business in Brazil and elsewhere. This article addresses the background of the IOC and FIFA scandals, the corruption-related risks associated with the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio, the law enforcement authorities responsible for spearheading investigations into corporate corruption, and practical takeaways for companies facing corruption-related risks.