On March 6, 2020 the US District Court for the District of Connecticut sentenced Lawrence Hoskins, a former senior executive at a French power and transportation company, to fifteen months in prison and a $30,000 fine for his actions in connection with a long-running money laundering scheme. Hoskins’ sentence is substantially lower than the U.S. Department of Justice’s recommendation of seven to nine years, which the DOJ had arrived at by urging the court to begin with a base offense level that was “determined by the underlying FCPA violations,” despite the fact that the District Court had entered a judgment of acquittal in Hoskins’ favor, reversing a jury verdict on the FCPA charges. At sentencing, the court rejected the DOJ’s argument and stated that it would be inappropriate to consider the dismissed FCPA charges in fashioning Hoskins’ sentence.
Following a jury trial in October 2019, Hoskins, a British citizen, had been convicted of money laundering and FCPA violations based on his participation in a bribery scheme that involved payments to Indonesian government officials in exchange for securing a $118 million contract. However, on February 26, 2020, the district court entered judgment of acquittal on the FCPA charges on grounds that there was insufficient evidence to prove that Hoskins acted as an agent of a U.S. subsidiary of the French company at which he worked. The court upheld, however, Hoskins’ money-laundering convictions. The DOJ has appealed the trial court’s February 26 decision.