National Security Lawyers
In the United States, threats to national security are not tolerated. Individuals, companies, and transactions that are viewed as potential threats are targeted swiftly, aggressively, and with the full authority of federal law. Our attorneys and former agents are available to assist with national security compliance, and we represent clients in all matters pertaining to national security defense.
Protecting the security of the United States, its citizens, and its businesses is the chief purpose of our country’s law enforcement and military operations. Threats to national security are not tolerated, and the response to national security threats is – and always will be – uncompromising.
For U.S. citizens and businesses, this is a good thing. We must rely on our government to protect us, and we need to feel confident that our borders (both physical and electronic) are secure. However, it can present some practical challenges as well. For companies that engage in business that has national security implications, the compliance burden can be substantial, and the risks of non-compliance can be severe.
For foreign nationals and businesses that present risks to U.S. national security (or that are perceived as presenting risks to U.S. national security), the risks are also substantial. There are numerous federal laws that proscribe all manner of national security threats, and extradition treaties allow federal authorities to prosecute foreign nationals in the U.S. courts. While this is necessary to the United States’ national security, it presents the risk of extreme deprivation for those charged with national security crimes.
Federal Compliance and Defense Counsel for National Security Matters
Oberheiden P.C. is a federal compliance and defense law firm that represents individuals and companies in national security matters. Our Cybercrime and National Security Team is comprised of former U.S. Attorneys, Senior Trial Attorneys with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and high-ranking agents with the DOJ, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and other agencies. We have extensive experience counseling clients with regard to compliance in multiple areas related to national security, and we have successfully represented the U.S. government, individuals, and businesses in investigations and trials involving substantial national security implications.
About Our National Security Practice
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) Compliance
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) prohibits individuals and companies from engaging in transactions with foreign privately-owned and sovereign entities that involve bribery and other corrupt practices or practices intended to sew the fabric of corruption. As amended in 1998, the FCPA also applies to foreign nationals and foreign companies that attempt to conduct or facilitate corrupt payments in the United States.
Recently, the DOJ has begun using the FCPA as a tool to target individuals and companies that present national security threats – both in the U.S. and abroad. We advise U.S. based, foreign, and multinational corporations on all aspects of FCPA compliance, and we represent clients in federal investigations involving alleged FCPA violations in the United States and overseas.
Importers and exporters in various industries can find themselves confronted with issues in the realm of national security. From exporting (or re-exporting) proprietary data and technology to importing chemicals and components that can be used to engineer bioweapons or other weapons of mass destruction (WMD), the range of transactions that can trigger federal scrutiny runs the gamut. Frequently, however, seemingly mundane and ordinary imports and exports can garner federal authorities’ attention as well.
We represent domestic and foreign entities with respect to all aspects of import/export compliance. Our lawyers also provide defense representation for matters involving the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the U.S. Department of State’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC), the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and other agencies.
Embargoes and Other Foreign Trade Restrictions
The U.S. government restricts (and, in many cases, prohibits) trade with individuals and entities in various foreign countries. In many cases, these restrictions are tied to concerns about state-sponsored terrorism and other potential threats to U.S. national security. For example, OFAC routinely designates foreign entities as specially designated nationals (SDNs), and it does so without providing notice to the SDN or any domestic businesses doing business with the specially designated national. This frequently leads to unanticipated investigations, and corporations, financial institutions, and other entities must respond to these investigations carefully in order to mitigate the risk of substantial penalties.
Issues involving various other embargoes and trade restrictions can lead to compliance needs, federal investigations, and federal charges as well. At Oberheiden P.C., we help our clients avoid the severe consequences of violating foreign trade restrictions in circumstances that raise national security concerns.
Under the Exon-Florio Amendment to the Defense Production Act and Foreign Investment and National Security Act of 2007 (FINSA), foreign investments in U.S. businesses will frequently be subject to review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) with an eye toward national security considerations. Investments originating from certain foreign nations are particularly likely to garner federal scrutiny, as are investments in assets such as innovative technologies and critical infrastructure. Concerns of corruption, economic espionage, and other illicit and furtive influences can also lead to DOJ, FBI, and other federal agency investigations as well.
Companies with defense, construction, technology, and other critical government contracts are at high risk for being targeted by foreign agents operating on behalf of businesses, governments, and terrorist organizations. These companies must make cybersecurity and national security compliance top priorities, and they must be prepared to respond immediately in the event of a threat or breach.
Foreign nationals and foreign companies that seek to corruptly influence federal government contractors and that conduct economic espionage can face severe penalties, as can government contractors that engage in corrupt practices (or fail to take appropriate measures to prevent them). In addition to presenting government contractors with regard to all aspects of compliance, we also provide defense representation for national security matters arising out of government contracts.
At the federal level, anti-cybercrime enforcement and national security often go hand-in-hand. Recently, the DOJ and FBI have placed particular emphasis on targeting economic espionage and corrupt foreign influences from China; however, the DOJ, FBI, and other agencies are also well aware that cybercrime presents national security risks on a global scale. Our practice encompasses the representation of U.S. citizens, foreign nationals, and domestic and international businesses in all matters arising out of the government’s anti-cybercrime enforcement efforts.
Direct and Immediate Threats to National Security
We also represent clients in matters that involve direct and immediate threats to national security. With a team that consists of highly-experienced former federal prosecutors and high-ranking federal agents and a practice that is national in scope, we are able to immediately step in to represent clients that are at risk for prosecution by the DOJ and the U.S. Attorney’s office due to national security-related allegations. If you or your company is being targeted, it is imperative that you engage national security defense counsel right away.
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Examples of the Types of National Security Matters We Handle
Within these areas, we handle all types of compliance and defense matters. This includes the following, all of which are viewed as having potential national security implications by the U.S. government:
- Foreign investments in U.S. companies and foreign acquisitions of ownership interests of U.S. companies (which may be subject to review by CFIUS).
- Transactions and other business dealings that implicate U.S. trade embargoes (including transactions involving SDNs and blocked assets) enforced by OFAC, the U.S. Department of State (DOS), and other agencies.
- International trade involving weapons, arms, munitions, and other defense products and services, which fall within the purview of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) administered by the DDTC.
- Other controlled imports and exports (including, but not limited to, software code, fuels and alternative energy sources, and aviation and space technologies) governed by the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) administered by BIS.
- Government contracts with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Department of Defense (DOS), National Security Agency (NSA), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and other federal agencies.
- Cybersecurity threats, including hacking, data and intellectual property (IP) theft, cyber attacks, and economic espionage.
- Malign foreign influences seeking to interfere with U.S. elections and other aspects of the United States’ sovereign democratic process.
- Bribery, blackmail, and other forms of corruption intended to facilitate access to U.S. government computer systems, government data and systems managed by private contractors, secret and proprietary corporate data, and other systems and data with potential national security implications.
Regardless of your specific needs, our Cybercrime and National Security Team has the knowledge, experience, and resources required to represent you effectively. To discuss your (or your company’s) situation in confidence, request a free initial consultation now.
Request a Free Initial Consultation at Oberheiden P.C.
To request a free initial consultation with a member of our Cyber Crime Defense Lawyers and National Security Team, call us at 214-692-2171 or send us your contact information online. Members of our team are standing by to speak with prospective clients 24/7.