Self-disclosures continue to roll into BIS
The U.S. Commerce Department's Bureau of Industry and Security has found no shortage of companies making voluntary self-disclosures of U.S. export control violations, despite the fact that they risk increased penalties for wrongdoing.
'It hasn't really happened,' said Kevin Delli-Colli, acting assistant secretary for export enforcement at BIS, to industry members of the Regulations and Procedures Technical Advisory Committee in Washington Tuesday.
Delli-Colli said BIS receives about 200 voluntary self-disclosures per year. Since the start of fiscal year 2009 (beginning Oct. 1), the agency has already received 92 voluntary self-disclosures, he said.
President Bush’s signing of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act in November raised the maximum penalty amount for civil violations of the export control regulations from $11,000 per violation to $250,000 per violation, or by twice the value of the transaction that is the basis for the violation. For criminal violations, persons may be fined up to $1 million and/or up to 20 years in jail.
Since 2004, however, BIS has maintained that voluntary self-disclosures are a ” ‘great weight’ mitigating factor” when determining the amount of export penalties to assess.
Most of the closed cases involving voluntary self-disclosures resulted only in a warning letter and no penalties, but Delli-Colli said taking this action doesn't mean companies avoid penalties altogether. 'Certain cases deserve some consequences,' he said. ' Chris Gillis