1) A group of Oil Traders from Switzerland who partnered with their American counterparts, sought to gain control of Russian Oil Exports from the highly productive areas in West Siberia. Rather than having to bid on a dollar per barrel of oil basis every day for the 2 million barrels per day of oil that was exported from this highly productive area, the traders invited the regional executives of the Russian oil production districts to meet with them in Davos, Switzerland. The oil traders sent a chartered airliner to Moscow to transport the Russian oil executives to Geneva, and then provided rail transport to Davos, for a five-day series of business meetings. Each day involved a skiing trip on the slopes of Davos for the oil executives accompanied by a trained skiing instructor. The business meetings were limited to about 1 hour per night, following an elegant evening dinner. The Swiss Oil Traders? and their U.S. Partners? defense of this entertainment was that there was no direct payment to the Russia oil executives, and therefore not a violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Do you think this is a violation of the FCPA? There is no exchange of payments, but is such elaborate entertainment acceptable under the FCPA?
2) An escalator in a very popular and busy shopping center, had a Red Emergency Stop Button on the inside of the elevator wall about 3 feet above the floor. There was no protective cap over the stop bottom. With a crowd of customers on the escalator, a 4 year-old little boy hit the Red Emergency Stop Button, and the escalator stopped immediately. A total of fifteen customers fell with the sudden stop, and seven suffered serious injuries. The injured parties filed law suits against the shopping center, and the shopping center enjoined the manufacturer of the escalator. Assume the role of the judge in this case. Do you think the injured parties can recover for their injuries? Which of the defendants do you think will be held liable for said injuries, and what will be the basis for the recoverable injuries? What is the basic legal question of liability in this case?
3) The city of BigTime, Texas, was suddenly needing to expand their Fire Department to add four new stations, which would require 92 new department employees. The city announced through various media the need for a total of 92 new Fire Department Employees with fairly attractive wages, and very attractive benefits such as health insurance, vacation time, pension funds, etc. Applicants were told they must apply within the next 15 days, and be willing to complete a series of qualification tests. A total of 280 people applied for these Fire Department Positions, 155 men and 125 women. All of these potential employees were first required to complete a background and reading/math test; 119 of the women (95%) and 136 of the men (88%) made satisfactory scores on this initial test, and advanced to the second and final requirement of a physical test. The physical test had a number of requirements including:
Only 11 of the women (9%) and 120 of the men (88%) made passing scores on this physical test, and qualified for further consideration for the 92 new Fire Department jobs. Is this hiring policy acceptable under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and this Federal Statute?s further development over the last 50 years? Does this hiring process involve Disparate Impact? Disparate Treatment? Should the BigTime City Fire Department be required to modify their hiring procedure?