Background

President Biden announced Aug. 18 his intent to nominate Matthew Axelrod as assistant secretary of Commerce for export enforcement. Axelrod has spent more than 13 years at the Department of Justice and is currently detailed to the Office of the White House Counsel.

During the Obama administration Axelrod served as the principal associate deputy attorney general, where he advised on the DOJ’s criminal and national security enforcement matters. Prior to that he spent over a decade as a federal prosecutor, including as an assistant U.S. attorney in Miami. He was later detailed to Main Justice, where he worked as a senior counsel to the assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division and then as an associate deputy attorney general responsible for overseeing the DOJ’s criminal enforcement work.

Axelrod would take the reins at a time when civil penalties and criminal convictions for export violations have risen to among their highest levels in years, highlighting the need for exporters to keep a sharp eye on compliance issues. For more information on how to review and evaluate your compliance, please contact attorney Kristine Pirnia via email.

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