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National Security Law Firm


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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 National Security lawyers and former agents are available to assist with all national security compliance matters including 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 aspects of national security compliance 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.

Fantastic lawyer - so dependable. We've worked with Nick for over 4 years and he is the best at what he does.
Denver F.
Denver F.
Attorney Lynette Byrd was so kind and helpful with my case. I would highly recommend her legal services.
Marcel L.
Marcel L.
Nick Oberheiden is an excellent attorney. He is hardworking, smart and intelligent.He takes a proactive approah on cases. He has dedicated team of former federal lawyers and investigators that are available to get results on cases. I recommend him highly.
Chris Q
Chris Q
Dr. Nick is acutely aware of the intricacies and subtleties of the relevant legal issues, and he is also gifted at explaining the issues in simple, easy-to-understand language. He has an outstanding rapport with the prosecutors - a critical talent for an Attorney trying to prevent prosecution or minimize criminal... exposure of his clients. He is a master of multi-tasking, so you can be rest assured that he is always up-to-date with your representation. I believe that his European background allows him to view the totality of your case from an extra “dimension,” which allows him to craft exceedingly effective strategies and proffers. His caring and empathetic attitude goes a long way in helping you to keep up your spirits through the process. I could not have hoped for a better outcome. I unreservedly recommend him - he is a true Master of the trade!read more
M R
M R
When your freedom, family, or fortune are at stake - it's best you meet Nick Oberheiden. Respected by the judges, his peers, colleagues, and clients - Nick is known to get results. Putting his keen intellect aside, one cannot help but appreciate his genuine desire to protect his clients and prevail. His cell number... is in my phone for good reason. And if I ever need him, I know he'll be there - ready to win.read more
Michael D. W.
Michael D. W.
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About Our National Security Law Firm

Oberheiden P.C. is a federal compliance and national security 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.

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.

Import/Export Compliance

Importers and exporters in various industries can find themselves confronted with issues in the realm of national security, requiring experienced national security defense counsel. 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.

Exon-Florio/FINSA Compliance

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.

Put our highly experienced team on your side

Dr. Nick Oberheiden
Dr. Nick Oberheiden

Founder

Attorney-at-Law

John W. Sellers
John W. Sellers

Former Senior Trial Attorney
U.S. Department of Justice

Local Counsel

Joanne Fine DeLena
Joanne Fine DeLena

Former Assistant U.S. Attorney

Local Counsel

Joe Brown
Joe Brown

Former U.S. Attorney & Former District Attorney

Local Trial & Defense Counsel

Amanda Marshall
Amanda Marshall

Former U.S. Attorney

Local Counsel

Aaron L. Wiley
Aaron L. Wiley

Former Federal Prosecutor

Local Counsel

Roger Bach
Roger Bach

Former Special Agent (OIG)

Michael Koslow
Michael Koslow

Former Supervisory Special Agent (FBI)

Chris Quick
Chris Quick

Former Special Agent (FBI & IRS-CI)

Kevin M. Sheridan
Kevin M. Sheridan

Former Special Agent (FBI)

Ray Yuen
Ray Yuen

Former Supervisory Special Agent (FBI)

Dennis A. Wichern
Dennis A. Wichern

Former Special Agent-in-Charge (DEA)

Government Contracting

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.

Anti-Cybercrime Enforcement

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 in a national security law firm 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.

FAQs: What U.S. Company Executives Need to Know About National Security Compliance

What are the national security system (NSS) requirements for government contractors?

 

The national security system (NSS) requirements establish minimum standards for government contractors’ IT systems and data security protocols. Government contractors must comply with the NSS requirements for any systems that involve: (i) intelligence activities, (ii) cryptologic activities related to national security, (iii) command and control of military forces, (iv) requirement that is an integral part of a weapon(s) system, (v) critical assets for fulfilling military or intelligence missions, or (vi) areas designated as classified in the interest of national defense or foreign policy by an Executive Order or Congressional act.

Does exporting products or data overseas require national security compliance?

 

Exporting products overseas can have a variety of national security implications. The same is true of exporting sensitive data to many foreign countries. Depending on the nature of the product or data a company is seeking to export, it may need to comply with various federal laws and regulations, and its exporting activities may be subject to the oversight of OFAC, DDTC, BIS, CBP, and other federal agencies.

How can I determine if an embargo or other trade restriction applies?

 

Determining whether an embargo or other trade restriction applies to a particular entity or transaction isn’t necessarily an easy process. Companies must work with their counsel to review OFAC’s SDN list and potentially a variety of other sources as well. But, while determining whether embargo or other trade restriction applies isn’t easy, it is extremely important, as attempting to do business with a blocked entity or foreign national can lead to asset seizures, federal investigations, and other consequences.

What transactions require CFIUS review?

 

Under amendments to CFIUS’s Rules adopted in 2020, transactions that require CFIUS review generally fall into two broad categories: (i) controlling transactions and (ii) covered investments. In both cases, CFIUS review is only triggered if the transaction or investment involves a “critical technology,” which is determined based on the applicable set of federal export regulations (i.e., EAR or ITAR).

Controlling transactions are those that involve a majority stake or other controlling interest in a U.S. company that designs, produces, or manufactures critical technologies. Covered investments are those that do not involve controlling ownership interests, but that nonetheless afford oversight or decision-making authority to a foreign entity.

How long does CFIUS approval take?

 

The duration of a CFIUS review is determined by various factors, including the nature of the critical technology involved and the complexity of the transaction at issue. While some CFIUS reviews can take as little as 15 days, in many cases companies should expect to wait 90 days or longer. Engaging outside counsel experienced in working with CFIUS can help to expedite the process in many cases.

Can companies face penalties for compromising national security?

 

Yes, companies can face a variety of federal penalties for compromising national security. This includes penalties that are administrative, civil, or criminal in nature. From the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) to the Foreign Investment and National Security Act of 2007, several federal laws establish corporate compliance obligations in the national security realm, and some of these laws (i.e., the FCPA) include provisions for criminal enforcement.

Can company executives face prosecution for compromising national security?

 

Yes, in addition to pursuing enforcement actions and criminal prosecution at the corporate level, federal authorities can (and do) pursue charges against company executives, board members, and other individuals when warranted. In these cases, not only can targeted individuals face substantial fines; but, in criminal cases, federal imprisonment can be on the table as well.


Request a Free Initial Consultation at Oberheiden P.C.

To request a free initial consultation with a member of our National Security Law Team, call us at 888-680-1745 or send us your contact information online. Members of our team are standing by to speak with prospective clients 24/7.

Request a Free Initial Consultation at Oberheiden P.C.

To request a free initial consultation with a member of our National Security Law Team, call us at 888-680-1745 or send us your contact information online. Members of our team are standing by to speak with prospective clients 24/7.



Why Clients Trust Oberheiden P.C.

  • 2,000+ Cases Won
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  • Experienced Trial Attorneys
  • Former Department of Justice Trial Attorneys
  • Former Federal Prosecutors, U.S. Attorney’s Office
  • Former Agents from FBI, OIG, DEA
  • Cases Handled in 48 States
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