Internal Investigations

Leading discreet, professional internal investigations is a core IGI competency. Our firm has conducted and assisted in high-profile investigations worldwide on behalf of an array of Fortune 500 companies, multinational corporations, privately held businesses, non-profit entities, trade associations, universities, governmental bodies, police departments, and labor union health insurance and pension funds.

Upon revelation of potential malfeasance within an organization, the executive and governance leadership of the organization has an immediate need to understand the facts and bounds of a potential crisis. IGI typically is retained in these cases by, and works at the direction of and in close consultation with, a company’s general counsel, board, audit, or special committee, outside counsel, or senior company executives.

IGI’s experience and expertise helps us to quickly and effectively uncover the material facts. In many cases, IGI has been credited with uncovering and securing “smoking gun” documents and other crucial evidence.

IGI has investigated a wide array of allegations and suspicions, including:

  • Accounting irregularities
  • False statements or claims to government agencies
  • Fraud
  • Kickbacks
  • Unauthorized leaks and breaches of data and proprietary information
  • Export control irregularities
  • Money laundering
  • Self-dealing
  • Conflicts of interest
  • Embezzlement
  • Racial discrimination
  • Sexual harassment
  • Theft and leaks of proprietary information
  • Insider trading
  • Inventory losses
  • Conflicts of interest

Such cases often take our experts deep inside a company – from the boardroom to the mailroom, and from the corporate headquarters to the factory floor. We find that many internal investigations also have an external dimension involving outside parties, not all of which cooperate willingly.

IGI staffs these cases with teams having the needed interdisciplinary skill sets, including forensic accounting for examination of financial records; computer forensics for capturing, restoring, and searching large amounts of data and reconstructing a minute-by-minute or keystroke-by-keystroke chronology of a person’s computer activity at a crucial time; and crisis communications advisory services. Our internal investigations are supervised by our attorneys and former prosecutors who ensure compliance with applicable laws and evidentiary standards.

IGI is well-positioned to refer matters to appropriate law enforcement and regulatory agencies, at the client’s direction. In other cases, IGI has exonerated companies and individuals by conclusively refuting allegations.

  • IGI was retained by a large, publicly traded company to conduct an internal investigation related to a purchasing manager who had fraudulently misappropriated Company funds and equipment. As part of the investigation, IGI analyzed hundreds of thousands of pages of forensic data from multiple custodians, interviewed over a dozen witnesses, and reviewed company’s financial and internal purchasing records from the decade prior. IGI determined that the individual had misappropriated several millions of dollars over nearly a decade, which was nearly triple what had been previously suspected by the Company. In addition to determining the amount of loss incurred, and the methods by which the fraud was executed, IGI also: identified internal control weaknesses within the Company that allowed the misappropriation to occur; assisted in coordinating the Company’s communications and information sharing with the FBI and relevant US Attorney’s Office, and; assisted in the Company’s claim submission to its insurance provider, including by briefing the provider’s investigators on the investigation, and sharing and explaining relevant records and calculations.
  • A prominent international organization retained our attorneys and investigators to conduct an internal investigation after learning that confidential documents and information had been misappropriated and leaked. Our scope of work included determining the extent and circumstances of the breach and conducting a security audit to assist the client in improving its document and IT management systems. In the course of our investigation, we captured and searched terabytes of data from the entity’s file and exchange servers, analyzed financial records and materials published by individuals believed to have received misappropriated documents, and interviewed witnesses. The investigation and audit were supervised by our attorneys, who ensured compliance with legal and client-driven privacy considerations and provided legal counsel to the client through privileged communications and work product while ensuring that privilege was maintained over applicable portions of the investigation. Our deliverables included a comprehensive report and presentation of our findings and recommendations to the organization’s board, which included a factual narrative detailing how certain individuals misappropriated and leaked proprietary documents and information.
  • On behalf of company in the health care industry, we uncovered and documented misconduct by an employee who had misappropriated confidential information. In the course of our investigation, we lawfully searched email accounts and developed a comprehensive profile of the subject employee, which uncovered significant financial liabilities and previously unknown ties to an individual who had been in litigation with our client.
  • IGI assisted a major law firm in an internal investigation of a high-profile management scandal at a Fortune 500 corporation. Our work included performing searches for assets of executives suspected of abusing the company’s relocation benefits program, forensically capturing and searching electronic messages and files on their company-owned computers, and assisting in provision of subpoenaed documents to prosecutors.
  • A major commercial real estate company received an anonymous tip alleging improper payments to contractors. IGI assisted the company by discreetly identifying and securing the cooperation of the tipster, then gathering information from him through interviews and analysis of documents and information he provided. We managed the ensuing internal investigation, including forensic accounting analysis to develop leads provided by the tipster, interviewing the employee involved in the suspected fraud and referring the matter to law enforcement.
  • We were retained by a national labor union that, along with its leadership, was being unfairly criticized by an anonymous website and online newsletter. The union’s leadership suspected that the party responsible for the anonymous online content could be a local official, and that the activity violated union rules. Our investigation included analyzing the source code of the anonymous website and newsletters and other cyber investigative techniques. Through extensive public records research, IGI researchers uncovered additional evidence implicating a certain official. Ultimately, IGI was able to link the anonymous online content to one particular elected leader.
  • Officials of a foreign state-owned company were accused of accepting millions of dollars of bribes and kickbacks from purported agents and intermediaries outside the company. IGI performed an internal investigation in the foreign country, located and interviewed the purported agents and intermediaries in the foreign country and in the United States, and gathered evidence including sworn witness affidavits that conclusively refuted the allegations. Furthermore, IGI traced the false accusations back to a propaganda campaign by political opponents of the head of the foreign government.
  • The Board of Directors of United Way of America (UWA) retained IGI to conduct an extensive internal investigation into allegations that the organization’s president had engaged in inappropriate behavior, including improper expenditures and misuse of the national charity’s funds. IGI reviewed, analyzed and audited voluminous internal financial and accounting records, conducted an outside investigation into a series of business entities and relationships, and conducted scores of interviews with current and former UWA employees and outside sources. Based on its findings, IGI made extensive recommendations to the charity’s board to address and correct the existing problems, as well as to improve internal procedures and overall management systems. IGI’s findings, released to the public by the United Way board, helped stop an erosion of public confidence in the institution, allowed the organization to address the concerns of its membership, and prepared it for a series of regulatory and law enforcement inquiries regarding the activities of its former top officers. IGI testified on behalf of the U.S. Government in its criminal prosecution of the former UWA officers, who were convicted in April 1995.
  • A U.S. bank with embassy and foreign government banking business was embroiled in a scandal related to money laundering for heads of state and officials of foreign governments. At the time IGI was brought into the case, U.S. government agencies and the bank’s auditors had already conducted investigations. IGI was retained by the bank’s outside counsel to independently review the scope of the findings of the previous probes and to identify and investigate additional concerns.
  • For the Board of Trustees of the New York State Teamsters Funds, IGI conducted a months-long internal investigation into the integrity of claims payment systems. Through interviews, document review and computer forensics, IGI identified a ring of claims processing employees who had exploited vulnerabilities in the Funds’ accounting and computer systems to embezzle substantial sums, by filing fabricated and duplicated medical benefits and insurance claims for reimbursement or payment to themselves and to outside co-conspirators. The Board of Trustees referred IGI’s findings to criminal prosecutors.