Compliance Fail in the Judiciary

Or: The felt in your own nest warms you especially nice! [Satire]

If one were to hear the following circumstances about a country typically referred to as the "banana republic", one would not be surprised. Possibly, courts or politicians in this country would even condescend to give advice and to urge to comply with the basic principles of compliance. In the case of the publisher C.H. Beck, however, the judiciary seems to have difficulties to meet the compliance requirements, which it is pushing hard for others.

The focus of the judicial failure is the head of the public prosecutor's office Munich I, Kornprobst.

Would, for example, be reported that in such a "banana republic" a single publisher not only dominates most of the legal literature - and thus the basis for both education and opinion formation - but at the same time is one of the largest suppliers of justice [1] and pays the members of the judiciary privately as authors, this alone would be more than questionable. If one learns further that the multi-million-Euro contracts for specialist literature and judgment databases were awarded without awarding procedure, [2] one begins to be surprised. Finally, one is amazed when one learns that judges and prosecutors, but because of work related to the disclosure of benefit, embezzlement, infidelity and other compliance violations, in turn, as a writer of this same supplier privately collect fees and that the Authorities director frankly admits to never actively having checked such payments and orders.[3]

'Felt' as an expectable result

Of course it fits into the picture, if this same publisher enjoys some benefits. So, for example, to be able to collect such large orders of the public sector not only without a procurement procedure, but even without having a tax number for the ostensible parent company.[4]

Or not having to publish annual accounts for the individual companies, because no one takes offense that the parent company could be seen as non-commercial inside German GbR and sometimes as a commercial external GbR as required (with corresponding consequences for the obligation to publish annual financial statements of all individual subsidiaries or just for the alleged parent company).


 Consequences arise depending on the consideration of the group, for example with regard to the possibility of offsetting the profits and losses of any group subsidiaries).[5]

Of course, even with appropriate evidence, a review would be very superficial and one would be satisfied even if contradictions in the statement of the owner and manager appear to be some flimsy argument that his remarks were pure legal opinions and not factual information.[6]

As it is said: It is hard to imagine that prosecutors overlook this. But it happened.


In its own right, even the judiciary is likely to have a "blind spot" that prevents it from being able to detect a lack of compliance. Or more colloquially: in the own nest the felt warms particularly nicely.

Too bad for other parts of the public sector, which would depend on the findings, for example, if there is no hybrid design, to which the application of tax money could otherwise be unlawful.


[1] According to head of prosecution, Kornprobst, the publishing house C.H. Beck is one of the largest business partners of the prosecutor Munich I.

[2] The head of the public prosecutor of Munich I, Kornprobst, had already admitted that he had given orders to the publisher C.H. Beck without awarding procedure.

[3] According to its own statement, the head of the public prosecutor Munich, Kornprobst, did not check the private payments and orders actively in detail per case and in the overall picture.

[4] The Media Group C.H. Beck does not have a tax number before 2013.

[5] The Media Group C.H. Beck has published exemptions for annual financial statements and explanations of the "voluntary loss takeover by the parent company" at also for the year 2012. Legal transactions could possibly conclude from such statements, that it is a commercial external GbR. However, according to the findings of the prosecutor Munich I, no commercial trade company is existing. These findings from the beginning of 2016, however, the public prosecutor's office never made public.

[6] Statement of the lawyer Dr. Beukelmann, legal representative of Dr. Hans-Dieter Beck.

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