Boies Hire, Verrilli Ad, Justice Tax Chief: Business of Law
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission lawyer Andrew Michaelson, who handled insider trading cases including that of Galleon Group LLC co-founder Raj Rajaratnam, is joining Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP (3416874L) as a partner.
Michaelson spent six years at the SEC, including four years as a special assistant U.S. attorney in the Southern District of New York’s Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force. Michaelson worked at Boies Schiller for three years before joining the SEC.
Rajaratnam was sentenced last year to 11 years in prison for masterminding an insider-trading scheme, one of the longest terms ever for insider trading.
“The leadership of this firm strongly believes that government experience enhances a lawyer’s ability to counsel and defend his or her clients,” Boies managing partner Donald L. Flexner said in a statement.
Dewey Loses Antitrust Litigator O’Kelly to Arent Fox
Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP (1151L) lost another partner as antitrust lawyer Eamon O’Kelly moved to Arent Fox LLP (1377L) last week. In a statement March 30, Arent said that O’Kelly, who was previously co-chair of Dewey’s antitrust practice, will focuses on antitrust, complex commercial litigation, arbitration, and contract disputes.
Dewey has had 38 partners leave since the start of the year, according an article in The American Lawyer magazine.
The New York-based law firm lost 12 insurance and regulatory lawyers to Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP (1179L) on March 17.
A call to Dewey’s spokesman Angelo Kakolyris wasn’t returned.
Caisley to Join Allen & Overy’s Dispute Resolution Practice
Allen & Overy LLP (323556L) announced March 29 the appointment of Lawson Caisley as a partner in its dispute resolution practice in London. He joins Allen & Overy after spending 20 years at Hogan Lovells LLP (1131L), the firm said in a statement.
He has been involved in complex disputes in the English courts for financial institutions in the life assurance and asset management sectors.
Allen & Overy has boosted its global dispute resolution capabilities by increasing the number of partners in the group by more than 40 percent in the past five years through internal promotions and lateral hiring, the firm said in a statement. confirmed the news.
Stanford’s Victims Oppose Fee Increase Sought by Receiver Janvey
Ralph Janvey, court-appointed receiver helping former clients of convicted Texas financier R. Allen Stanford, is facing opposition to a request for a pay raise from those clients.
Janvey and his team of professionals have been paid more than $45 million since they were appointed to oversee Stanford’s assets, which were seized by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in February 2009, according to a filing March 30 by the Official Stanford Investors Committee in federal court in Dallas.
Janvey filed a court request this month for a 10 percent boost in his hourly rate and a 10 percent reduction in the amount the Dallas judge presiding over Stanford’s civil case has ordered held back from the receivership’s billings. The amount held back is $14 million, according to the filing.
“During this same time, the investor victims have not recovered a single penny, as there have been no distributions,” lawyers for the investors’ committee said in the March 30 filing. “Given the current state of this receivership, the committee cannot agree to giving the receiver’s professionals what is widely perceived within the investor community as a ‘raise.’”
Stanford, 62, was convicted on March 6 of 13 criminal counts tied to allegations he defrauded investors through the sale of bogus certificates of deposit at his Antigua-based Stanford International Bank. He faces more than 20 years in prison when he’s sentenced on June 14.
Kevin Sadler, Janvey’s lawyer, urged U.S. District Judge David Godbey in Dallas in a March 9 filing to grant the pay increase on the grounds the receiver’s team has been working at below-market rates and hasn’t had a raise in three years. He also claimed that receivers for equally high-profile fraud cases are getting significantly higher pay for similar work.
The trustee working to compensate victims defrauded by New York financier Bernard Madoff is charging $765 an hour while his lead lawyers receive $750 to $850 an hour, Sadler said in the Janvey fee-request filing.
In contrast, Janvey said he’s receiving just $272 an hour and his lead lawyers are paid $365 to $444 an hour, after discounts and holdbacks ordered by the judge in the Stanford case are factored in, according to the filing.
The SEC and a court-appointed examiner who represents investors in the case both oppose raising the hourly pay rate for the receivership team, according to Janvey’s filing. The regulators and the examiner agree the holdback should be dialed back to 10 percent from the current 20 percent, according to the filing.
As of Oct. 31, Janvey’s most recent accounting of the Stanford receivership’s assets, the estate had total cash on hand of $114.5 million.
The criminal case is U.S. v. Stanford, 09-cr-342, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas (Houston). The SEC case is Securities and Exchange Commission v. Stanford International Bank, 09-cv-298, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas (Dallas).
U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli was the target of a Republican Party Internet advertisement that altered the audio of U.S. Supreme Court (1000L) oral arguments in an attack on President Barack Obama’s health-care law, Bloomberg News’ Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Greg Stohr report.
In a web ad circulated last week, the Republican National Committee excerpted the opening seconds of the March 27 presentation by Verrilli. In the ad, he is heard struggling for words and twice stopping to drink water.
“Obamacare,” the ad concludes, in words shown against a photograph of the high court. “It’s a tough sell.”
A review of a transcript and recordings of those moments shows that Verrilli took a sip of water just once, paused for a much briefer period and completed his thought -- rather than stuttering and trailing off as heard in the edited version.
RNC Communications Director Sean Spicer said the video was a “mash-up,” condensing and splicing together several separate pauses and stutters by Verrilli during the first two minutes of his argument, produced to illustrate how much difficulty he had defending the health-care law.
“Are there multiple clips in that video? Yes,” Spicer said. “The point was that he continually had to stop because he was having trouble making the case for why Obamacare was valid.”
The Democratic National Committee declined to comment.
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Keneally Confirmed to Lead Justice Department Tax Division
The U.S. Senate confirmed New York attorney Kathryn Keneally as assistant attorney general of the Justice Department’s tax division, where she will help run crackdowns on identity theft and offshore tax evasion.
Keneally, a partner at Fulbright & Jaworski LLP (1126L), was President Barack Obama’s second choice after an earlier nominee, Mary L. Smith, was blocked by lawmakers. Keneally was among scores of nominees confirmed yesterday by the Senate for top government jobs. The Senate also confirmed Michael Horowitz, a Washington-based lawyer, as inspector general.
Keneally will lead more than 300 civil and criminal lawyers who handle a wide range of investigations and litigation. Bloomberg News reported March 27 that the division lost almost 30 percent of its 95 prosecutors in the past month, slowing a U.S. crackdown on offshore banks that enabled tax evasion, according to four people familiar with the matter.
Many of the lawyers handled cases involving foreign banks or financial advisers suspected of helping U.S. clients cheat on taxes, the people said. The transfers came amid criminal probes of at least 11 Swiss financial institutions, including Credit Suisse Group AG, with the tax division leading or assisting each prosecution.
The division investigates identity theft, illegal tax shelters and other crimes, while approving every tax case filed by the 94 presidentially appointed U.S. attorneys serving the Justice Department around the country.
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Baker Botts Associate Evan Young Wins Supreme Court Argument
Baker Botts LLP (1143L) associate Evan Young won a U.S. Supreme Court case that affirmed a district court has discretion to order a defendant’s federal sentence be consecutive to an anticipated state sentence that hasn’t yet been imposed.
Young, a former law clerk to Justice Antonin Scalia, was appointed amicus curiae in the drug case when the government supported the petitioner, Monroe Setser, in challenging the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling.
Young argued against the government’s position, which would have given the Bureau of Prisons the power to decide whether the federal and state sentences should be served consecutively or concurrently.
Young, whose litigation and appellate practice rarely includes criminal sentencing, said the opportunity gave him important experience. “What this case was really about was how to understand a complicated statute and the allocation of authority among different part of the federal government.”
Nanda Chitre, from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Public Affairs declined to comment.
The case is Setser v. U.S., 10-7387, U.S. Supreme Court (Washington).
McDermott Adds Four IP Lawyers in Silicon Valley Office
McDermott Will & Emery LLP (1121L) announced March 29 the appointment of intellectual property litigator Fabio Marino, as a partner in its Silicon Valley office. Marino, previously at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP, is bringing three additional lawyers with him to McDermott. They are: of counsel Judith S.H. Hom and associates Nitin Gambhir and Barrington E. Dyer, the firm said in a statement.
With these appointments, McDermott has expanded its intellectual property practice in the Silicon Valley office by six lawyers in the past 30 days, the firm said.
A call to Orrick spokesman David Schaefer wasn’t returned.
McKenna Long’s Toranto Joins Sheppard Mullin in San Diego
Real estate lawyer Tony Toranto has joined Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP (1215L) as a partner in the firm’s San Diego office. Toranto will work in both the real estate, land use and environmental practice group and the corporate and energy groups. Toranto joins from McKenna Long & Aldridge (1263L) in San Diego.
Sabrina P. McGowan, McKenna’s public relations manager, didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment on Toranto.
Sharp Electronics General Counsel Moves to Little Mendelson
Employment and labor law firm Littler Mendelson PC (1190L) added Bradley A. Siciliano to its corporate ethics & compliance practice as a shareholder in the firm’s New York office.
Prior to joining Littler, Siciliano served as general counsel and corporate secretary for Sharp Electronics Corp.
Cooley Advises Millennial Media in Initial Public Offering
Millennial, a seller of advertising space on mobile devices, almost doubled in its first day of trading March 29, a sign investors have a growing appetite for providers of mobile services.
The Baltimore-based company lets advertisers target consumers through smartphone and tablet applications. The initial public offering is seen as a barometer for interest in other would-be IPOs that rely on mobile technology.
The Cooley team was led by Brent Siler and Brian Leaf and also included Ryan Naftulin, Darren DeStefano, Tim Emmet, Katie Kazem and Linh Su, with help on compensation and benefits matters from Wendy Davis and Ashlie Lawton.
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