In addition to the substantive elements of an anti-bribery violation, the government must establish a jurisdictional nexus between the United States and the covered person or charged conduct.  This requires proof that:

  • the conduct was committed by a “US person,” a US citizen or national, or entity organized under the laws of the US;
  • the covered person used the US mail or other means or instrumentality of interstate commerce in furtherance of the corrupt payment; or
  • the covered person acted in furtherance of the corrupt payment while in the territory of the US.1

The government can only pursue charges under a secondary theory of liability against persons otherwise covered by the statute.2

For more on the extraterritorial application of the FCPA, see here, and, for more on theories of secondary liability, see here.


1 15 USC §§ 78dd-1(g), 78dd-2(i) (US person); 15 USC §§ 78dd-1(a), 78dd-2(a), 78dd-3(a) (use of US mails or other means or instrumentality of interstate commerce); 15 USC § 78dd-3(a) (acts while in the US).

2 United States v. Hoskins, 902 F.3d 69, 97 (2d Cir. 2018).

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