I recently read a scorecard on CEO scandals in corporate America, and it made me realize that criminal charges have replaced wrist slapping as the most likely result of inappropriate corporate behavior. Misplaced ambition now appears to have a price (thank goodness!).

Want to know how to avoid jail time, fines and penalties (which apply, by the way, to managers and executives of private and nonprofit companies in addition to public ones), as well as the negative attention these judgments bring with them? Well, an obvious way to do that is to read and know the regulations and comply with them. However, in case you want examples, let's review seven serious sins (I'm sure there are many more!) that have already resulted in (and will continue to result in) the aforementioned judgments. Each one of these seven serious sins is guaranteed to garner not only increased attention, but greater controls as well.

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