In discussing the contours of individual liability under section 403, this Note has not attempted to criticize the section's draftsmanship or counsel against its adoption. The philosophy of liability reflected in section 403 wisely avoids the imposition of vicarious liability on corporate officials. The defendant's personal misconduct, failure to act, or reckless failure to supervise invoke the sanctions of the provisions. In addition, subsections (b) and (c) provide a theoretical underpinning for punishing omissions that is preferable to the indicia of artificial "participation" relied upon in former state and federal cases.
This Note has also attempted to establish some limitations against an expansive reading of section 403. The Proposed Code's modest extension of individual criminal culpability is secondary to its attempt to properly "locate the point [in the corporate hierarchy] at which extended responsibility for various crimes reaches optimum effectiveness and should, therefore, terminate."' The Proposed Code faces the challenge of properly identifying individual defendants in a corporate setting. Prosecutors who select the defendants and courts who adjudge the standards of liability will accomplish that proper identification by constant reference to the twin goals of section 403-deterrence of individual misconduct and coercion of affirmative management of corporate activity to avoid public harm.
Stephen D. Goodwin,
Individual Liability of Agents for Corporate Crimes Under the Proposed Federal Criminal Code,
31 Vanderbilt Law Review
Available at: https://scholarship.law.vanderbilt.edu/vlr/vol31/iss4/9