Biomet Deferred Prosecution Agreement 2007
On September 27, 2007, the government criticized companies for using consulting agreements with orthopaedic surgeons to encourage artificial hip and knee reconstruction and replacement products for a given company. The survey showed that this was a common practice for companies from 2002 to at least 2006. Surgeons who had agreements with companies were typically paid tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars a year for consulting contracts and were often inundated with travel and other expensive businesses. Even today, criminal proceedings filed on 27 September 2007 when the data protection authorities were registered, were dismissed at the U.S. request against the companies – Zimmer, Inc., Depuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Biomet Inc. and Smith-Nephew, Inc. – The complaints alleged criminal violations of the federal anti-kickback law, but were dismissed because of the success of corporate data protection authorities. The usual assertion in all five cases is that each company has advisory agreements with orthopaedic surgeons that companies have paid to induce surgeons to use the company`s hip and knee replacement products. Offences to the DPA could expose Biomet to criminal offences for FCPA offences. But in the same court case, the DOJ said it is discussing with the company a solution that would avoid a trial.  In 2008, the DOJ was subject to a particularly rigorous review – including allegations of insider affairs regarding the appointment of these potentially lucrative monitors – after the United States at the time. Lawyer Christopher Christie has selected his former chief and U.S.
Attorney General, John Ashcroft, as part of the DOJ DPA agreement with a medical technology company as an external monitor of the FCPA. See Philip Shenon, Ashcroft Deal Brings Scrutiny in Justice Dept., New York Times (January 10, 2008), available www.nytimes.com/ 2008/01/10/washington/10justice.html. As a result of this very public consultation on the DOJ`s approach to data protection authorities, the number of data protection authorities and surveillance has likely decreased. In 2008 and 2009, the DOJ entered into about half as many data protection and non-law agreements as in 2007. „The monitors used by companies have played a key role in fully integrating the objectives and requirements of agreements into business practices,” Marra said.