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Kevin Muhlendorf Discusses Benefits to DOJ of Having U.S. Postal Service Investigators Address FCPA Matters

Global Investigations Review
August 6, 2018

Kevin B. Muhlendorf, partner in Wiley Rein’s White Collar Defense & Government Investigations Practice, was quoted extensively in an August 2 Global Investigations Review article exploring how the U.S. Postal Service’s investigative unit — the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) —  has recently delved into a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) investigation of a UK engineering firm. The USPIS is made of about 1,280 investigators who work side-by side with law enforcement professionals across the country and are sometimes asked by DOJ to assist in investigating financial crimes, according to the article.

Mr. Muhlendorf, a former assistant chief in the DOJ Criminal Division’s Fraud Section, had positive experiences working postal inspectors. “I can’t speak highly enough about how great it was to work with them and to have them in the Fraud Section,” he said.

He also addressed the benefits of having additional resources available, all under DOJ’s roof. “I could just go down the hall and ask the postal inspectors: ‘Can you guys help on this case? We need to go interview this victim’,” Mr. Muhlendorf said. “It was really, really helpful.”

Mr. Muhlendorf added: “Few outside of law enforcement really know anything about the postal inspectors. People think they wear short pants and drop boxes off, but they really are a great resource for the DOJ. They are just like other federal law enforcement officers, with badges, guns and arrest powers.”

Mr. Muhlendorf said that postal inspectors “can bring a lot to the table” in FCPA investigations because they have their own forensic team and accountants. In addition, such high-dollar matters are a good fit for USPIS’s experience in financial analysis – a skill they acquired from following fraud and money laundering schemes through the mail. The inspectors want to be involved in more FCPA work, he said, as it “broadens their horizons and their portfolio.”