As first appeared in The Indiana Lawyer.
According to the Department of Justice, more and more white-collar criminal defendants are being prosecuted every year.
At the same time, the DOJ has decreased the frequency with which it prosecutes corporations. Obviously, you cannot put a company in jail, so this is largely a decision to refrain from seeking monetary penalties against large entities that are alleged to have engaged in some illegal practice. (Note, the DOJ does not consider the paying back of illegitimate proceeds, or “disgorgement,” to be a financial penalty.)
DOJ officials have stated on the record that it is often unfair to punish innocent employees, shareholders and customers by imposing monetary penalties on the company that was involved in the wrongdoing.