Deferred Agreement Prosecution: A Closer Look
Deferred agreement prosecution (DAP) is a legal arrangement in which a company or individual accused of a crime agrees to defer prosecution in exchange for complying with certain terms and conditions set forth in a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA). The terms of the agreement typically require the defendant to take certain actions or make certain changes in order to avoid criminal prosecution.
DAP is a common tool used by prosecutors in cases where a company or individual may have committed a crime due to factors such as lack of proper controls, oversight, or training. Rather than immediately initiating criminal proceedings, prosecutors may choose to enter into a DPA with the defendant, which allows the defendant to avoid a criminal conviction if certain requirements are met.
The concept of DAP is often associated with white-collar crime, particularly in cases involving bribery, fraud, and other financial crimes. However, DAP can also be used in cases involving other types of criminal activity, such as environmental offenses or drug crimes.
One of the key benefits of DAP is that it allows defendants to avoid the stigma and potential consequences of a criminal conviction. For companies, a criminal conviction can result in significant reputational damage, loss of business, and financial penalties. For individuals, a criminal conviction can result in the loss of professional licenses or job opportunities, as well as the risk of imprisonment.
In order for a DAP to be successful, the terms and conditions must be carefully crafted to ensure that the defendant is able to comply with them. Typically, the terms of the agreement will include requirements such as:
• Implementing stronger internal controls and compliance programs
• Conducting an internal investigation to identify and address wrongdoing
• Cooperating with the government`s investigation
• Paying restitution or fines
• Admitting to wrongdoing
If the defendant successfully complies with the terms of the DAP, the government will dismiss the charges against them. If the defendant fails to comply with the terms, the government can resume the criminal proceedings.
One criticism of DAP is that it allows companies and individuals to avoid criminal prosecution without fully addressing the underlying problems that led to the criminal behavior in the first place. Critics argue that DAP can create a culture of impunity and discourage companies from implementing meaningful changes to prevent future criminal activity.
Despite these criticisms, DAP remains a useful tool for prosecutors seeking to address white-collar crime and other forms of criminal activity. By entering into a DAP, defendants can avoid the consequences of a criminal conviction while still being held accountable for their actions. For companies and individuals facing criminal charges, DAP offers a way to move forward and make amends for past wrongdoing.