Denise Hansberry, a senior counsel in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act unit in Washington, DC, has worked on some of the biggest foreign bribery cases the regulator has investigated.
Hansberry, who received her undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College in 1985 and her law degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1989, previously worked in the general counsel's office at the Department of Agriculture.
Hansberry helped bring the US government’s 2008 blockbuster case against German conglomerate Siemens that resulted in US$350 million disgorgement order by the SEC, a US$450 million criminal fine from the Justice Department, and US$856 million paid to German authorities.
Siemens remains the largest FCPA case to date. Hansberry worked on the matter with fellow SEC attorneys Cheryl Scarboro, now a partner with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, and Tracy Price, among others.
In July 2016 Hansberry concluded an FCPA settlement with South American-based LAN Airlines. The company agreed to pay more than US$22 million to settle civil and criminal cases over its authorisation of improper payments during a dispute with union employees in Argentina. Under the settlement, LAN has retained a monitor for 27 months.
Hansberry worked with Scarboro and Price on several corruption cases that stemmed from the United Nations oil-for-food programme in Iraq. In 2007 she worked on a case against energy company El Paso Corporation. The company was found to have paid US$5.5 million in illegal “surcharge payments” to Saddam Hussein’s government in exchange for oil. El Paso paid US$7million to settle the allegations.
She also brought a similar case against Chevron Corporation, for kickbacks paid by the company to the Hussein regime. Chevron paid US$20 million to the US attorney's office, US$5 million to the Manhattan District Attorney's Office, US$2 million to the US Treasury, and US$3 million to the SEC.
Hansberry worked on the commission’s case against logistics company Panalpina World Transport, and six of its oil and gas customers. The SEC announced in November 2010 that the seven companies would pay a combined US$236.5 million to settle charges that they bribed customs officials in more than 10 countries.