Title VIII: Corporate and Criminal Fraud Accountability Act of 2002.
It is a felony to “knowingly” destroy or create documents to “impede, obstruct or influence” any existing or contemplated federal investigation.
Auditors are required to maintain “all audit or review work papers” for five years.
The statute of limitations on securities fraud claims is extended to the earlier of five years from the fraud, or two years after the fraud was discovered, from three years and one year, respectively.
Employees of issuers and accounting firms are extended “whistleblower protection” that would prohibit the employer from taking certain actions against employees who lawfully disclose private employer information to, among others, parties in a judicial proceeding involving a fraud claim. Whistle blowers are also granted a remedy of special damages and attorney’s fees.
A new crime for securities fraud that has penalties of fines and up to 10 years imprisonment.