Dewey Lawyers in Moscow, Almaty Said to Join Morgan Lewis

Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP’s six partners in its Russian and Almaty, Kazakhstan, offices will move to Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, according to a person familiar with the situation.

In addition to the six partners, the firm’s associates and staff will also move to Morgan Lewis, said the person, who declined to be named because the changes haven’t been publicly announced.

Stephen Jurgenson, head of Dewey’s Abu Dhabi office, and James Simpson, a London partner, also departed today, for Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP. Simpson served as co-head of Dewey’s project finance and infrastructure practice, Pillsbury said in a statement. Jurgenson oversaw the development of the Abu Dhabi office since 2010, according to the statement.

Dewey has lost more than a third of its partners in recent weeks. Mergers-and-acquisitions chief Morton Pierce left for White & Case LLP in New York yesterday.

In Frankfurt, a Dewey corporate finance team is moving to McDermott Will & Emery LLP, the firm said in a statement. The team includes Dewey’s Frankfurt office head Philipp von Ilberg and Joseph W. Marx. The move gives McDermott its third German office alongside Munich and Dusseldorf.

“Opening in Frankfurt with such high-caliber lawyers is an important strategic move for the Firm and our clients,” said Peter J. Sacripanti, co-chair of Chicago firm McDermott. “Frankfurt is a key international financial center in one of the strongest economies of the world.”

Sharp’s Move

Morgan Lewis said yesterday that Peter Sharp, the managing partner of Dewey’s London office, and two other lawyers would join its outpost in the U.K. capital.

Two London-based Dewey lawyers, Bruce Johnston and Amanda Jennings, are joining Morgan Lewis, the person said. Johnston had been appointed by Dewey to a London committee to review the office’s options to wind down or close the business.

Dewey’s privately placed bonds, sold in 2010 to insurance companies to refinance older bank loans, have fallen as low as 45 cents to 55 cents on the dollar, from a trade in the 60s on April 27, Kevin Starke, an analyst at CRT Capital Group LLC, said in a report yesterday.

Dewey, based in New York, is in “an apparent death spiral,” Starke wrote.

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