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William Jacobson


Washington, D.C.

Jacobson William
William Jacobson


Washington, D.C.

Billy focuses his practice on FCPA and white collar enforcement, representing corporates, individuals, and financial institutions. Billy has over 25 years of experience, having served as the Chief Compliance Officer and Co-General Counsel of a global oilfield services company, as a federal prosecutor - including as Assistant Chief for FCPA Enforcement in DOJ’s Fraud Section, and in private practice. Billy’s expertise both in corporate compliance and corporate criminal defense is a rare combination that serves clients well.

Billy’s practice currently includes the representation of companies with reporting obligations to the DOJ and SEC; the representation of companies facing potential sanctions by the World Bank; serving as compliance counsel for several companies and private equity firms; and the representation of several individuals in various FCPA investigations.

In 2020, Billy completed the monitorship of Braskem SA, a large multi-national petrochemical company based in Brazil that settled enforcement actions in 2016. He was appointed as an independent compliance monitor by the DOJ, SEC and the Brazilian MPF. That monitorship concluded successfully and on schedule.

Billy is considered a thought leader in the industry, having spoken extensively on compliance and investigation topics. 
Billy is widely recognized as a leading FCPA and compliance lawyer, having been ranked by Chambers USA in both the FCPA: Nationwide (USA) and Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (D.C.) categories. According to Chambers USA, clients say Billy has “impressive experience both as in-house counsel and as a government prosecutor, and advises on compliance programs and regulatory investigations.” Another source highlights "the wealth of knowledge he brings to the table," noting: "There's nothing he hasn't seen, and he has the ability to get to the heart of a matter." In 2021, Billy was named by Global Investigation Review (GIR) as one of the 30 Top FCPA Practitioners, among leading lawyers and forensic advisers in the FCPA space.

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Washington, D.C.

1101 New York Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C.

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Admitted: Bar of the State of New York, 1994

Admitted: Bar of the District of Columbia, 1996


JD., Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, D.C., 1993

B.A., Tufts University, Medford, MA, 1990

Other noteworthy experience


  • Achieving the dismissal of charges brought against an Asian infrastructure company by the sanctions arm of the African Development Bank.
  • Obtaining successful resolutions to cases being pursued against corporates by the sanctions arm of the World Bank.
  • Assisting many companies in different business sectors with regard to a variety of compliance matters, including the establishment of compliance programs, diligence during mergers & acquisitions, compliance audits and risk assessments.
  • Obtaining the termination of an SEC investigation into the accounting practices of a large, multinational oil & gas company.
  • Representing a U.S. state-owned transportation entity in an investigation by the SEC and local prosecutors into the use of allocated funds.
  • Representing an international law firm in a DOJ/SEC investigation into the use of the proceeds of municipal bonds.
  • Representing an international law firm in a DOJ FCPA investigation.
  • Representing a steel company in a U.S. Department of Labor investigation.
  • Representing a large accountancy and consulting firm in a European competition investigation.
  • In a pro bono matter, achieving the dismissal of all charges, after trial, against a protestor charged with rioting in connection with the 2017 Presidential Inauguration.