On September 9, 2015, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates issued a memorandum (the “Yates Memo”) in an attempt to address the Department of Justice’s (“DOJ”) seeming inability to prosecute the individuals responsible for corporate crime and misconduct. The memo announced new DOJ policy regarding individual accountability for corporate fraud, wrongdoing, and other misconduct. Specifically, it identified six key policies meant to enable DOJ prosecutors to more effectively prosecute the individuals responsible for corporate misconduct. The memo, however, did not address the biggest obstacle to holding individuals accountable for criminal corporate conduct—the DOJ’s overuse of deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements. This Note argues that, because the Yates Memo did not specifically curtail the overuse of deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements, it will not be able to achieve its stated goal of reducing impunity for the individuals responsible for corporate crime. This Note then provides policy suggestions for how the DOJ could further amend its policies to address the overuse of deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements.
Christopher Modlish, The Yates Memo: DOJ Public Relations Move or Meaningful Reform That Will End Impunity for Corporate Criminals?, 58 B.C. L. Rev. 743 (2017), https://lawdigitalcommons.bc.edu/bclr/vol58/iss2/8