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Marcel Ribas

Marcel Ribas
55 11 3147 7763 marcel.ribas@mattosfilho.com.br São Paulo – Paulista

Experience

A specialist in complex investigations, corporate governance and compliance, Marcel concentrates his practice on internal investigations and protecting clients against risks linked to corruption, money laundering, international sanctions and fraud.

 

Marcel is admitted to practice in Brazil and in the United States (New York). He is experienced in advising and defending clients in high-profile cross-border anticorruption cases, and regularly provides companies and management with strategy advice during their investigation and response to other sensitive issues, such as criminal investigations against employees and third parties, misappropriation of assets, unfair competition, environmental incidents, human rights violations, discrimination, and moral and sexual harassment.

Education

Bachelor of Laws – Faculdade de Direito de Curitiba
Master of Laws (LL.M.) – Columbia Law School, USA
Specialization Degree in Corporate Law – Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV)

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With Marcel Ribas

MPF issues favorable guidelines to the adhesion of individuals to leniency agreements

​The 5th Chamber for Coordination and Review of the Brazilian Federal Prosecution Office (5th CCR) has issued a technical note in defense of the adhesion of individuals to leniency agreements entered by companies. Although not binding, the document seeks to guide the work of federal prosecutors and provide greater legal certainty to individuals.

According to the technical note, the need to establish guidelines on the subject stems from limitations imposed by the Brazilian Anti-Corruption Law (Law No. 12,846/2013), which made leniency agreements available only to companies, except in case of corporate veil lifting (article 14). The 5th CCR states that allowing individuals to adhere to these agreements helps to standardize the civil and criminal activities of the Brazilian Federal Prosecution Office (MPF) in combating corruption.

Another measure defended by the 5th CCR to standardize leniency agreements concerns the concentration of investigations in a single prosecutor, even if the relevant facts occurred in different locations. The 5th CCR argues that, with respect to the constitutional principle of unity of the MPF, an agreement that was executed and approved must be observed by the other members of the institution, who should not challenge its validity and effectiveness.

The document highlights that illegal acts covered by leniency agreements entered with companies are necessarily committed by individuals (such as shareholders, executives, employees, representatives or contractors), and allowing them to participate in the negotiation process may significantly increase the understanding of the facts and leverage investigative activities.

Regarding the legal possibility of extending agreements to individuals, the 5th CCR explains that, although there is no express legal provision, it meets the legal objectives set out in the Brazilian Anti-Corruption Law, which is corroborated by the amendments introduced by the Anti-Crime Package (Law No. 13,964/2019) that created the Civil Non-Persecution Agreement and amended the Administrative Improbity Law (Law No. 8,429/1992). The 5th CCR also points out that the topic has already been the subject of the MPF’s Guidelines No. 7/2017 and No. 01/2018, the latter published jointly with the 2nd Chamber for Coordination and Review, as well as presents information on agreements already approved by the 5th CCR that provided for the adhesion of individuals.

Finally, the 5th CCR emphasized that the non-extension of the leniency agreement to individuals represents an obstacle to the efficiency and development of investigations. On the other hand, among the risks involved, the 5th CCR highlights the potential conflict of interest between legal entities and individuals who have committed the illegal acts, by not finding express provision of law to integrate the same process of negotiation and collaboration with the authorities.

The full technical note is available on the MPF’s website.

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