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Armed Services Counsel to Covington: Business of Law

Oct. 7 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. House Armed Services Committee’s former general counsel, Roger Zakheim, is moving in November to Covington & Burling LLP, where he’ll join the global public policy and government affairs and defense, homeland and national security practices.

“He is widely respected across the defense industry and both branches of government for his in-depth knowledge of the budget, public policy and legal issues facing the sector,” Timothy Hester, chairman of the firm’s management committee, said in a statement.

In his job at the House Armed Services Committee, Zakheim managed the passage of legislation authorizing the Defense Department’s $600 billion budget. He also oversaw committee investigations and oversight hearings, the firm said.

Covington has more than 800 lawyers at offices in Beijing, Brussels, London, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Seoul, Shanghai, California’s Silicon Valley and Washington.

DLA Piper Chooses Jones Day Lawyer to Head China IP Practice

DLA Piper LLP added Horace Lam and four associates to its intellectual property and technology group in Beijing. Lam, who will be a partner and the head of the China intellectual property group, was previously at Jones Day, also in Beijing.

Lam practices both contentious and non-contentious IP work and has represented multinational companies on IP issues in China. His practice also includes licensing, trademarks, copyrights and patents, the firm said.

“Horace is recognized as a commercially minded, well-established lawyer in the China IP marketplace, and his appointment will bolster our Asia IP offering enabling us to further develop and expand our IP capabilities for our clients in Asia, Europe and the U.S.,” Richard Wageman, DLA Piper’s Asia group head for intellectual property, said in a statement.

DLA Piper has about 1,500 lawyers in more than 20 offices worldwide.

Edwards Wildman Adds IP Partner in London From Bird & Bird

Sarah Pearce joined Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP’s London office as a partner in the intellectual property practice. She was previously in the international commercial group of Bird & Bird LLP’s Paris office.

Her practice focuses on information technology, communications and outsourcing projects, and she regularly advises clients on complex information technology transactions and procurement, the firm said.

Pearce advises on general commercial matters and has experience developing contractual structures. She has also represented clients on e-commerce projects and has significant experience in commercial and regulatory media, outsourcing, data protection and other matters, the firm said.

Edwards Wildman has 600 lawyers in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

Hogan Lovells Adds Environmental Litigation Team

Hogan Lovells LLP announced that Justin Savage, a former litigator at the U.S. Justice Department, will join the firm’s Washington office as a partner.

Savage spent almost a decade working in the agency’s environment and natural resources division, where he was senior counsel.

“Justin’s arrival greatly strengthens our capability to secure and sustain litigation work for clients,” Warren Gorrell, the firm’s co-chief executive officer, said in a statement. “Given his 15 years of successful litigation and environmental experience, Justin is a highly valuable asset.”

Savage’s practice will focus on complex civil litigation and environmental matters including enforcement actions, citizen suits and regulatory challenges.

Hogan Lovells has 2,500 lawyers at more than 40 offices in the U.S., Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Asia.

Sheppard Mullin Adds Accessibility Litigator in Orange County

Gregory F. Hurley joined the Orange County, California, office of Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP as a partner in the business trial practice group.

Hurley was previously at Greenberg Traurig LLP, where he helped open that firm’s Orange County outpost and co-led the Americans with Disabilities Act, accessibility, building and life-safety codes practice and managed the office’s litigation group for the past 10 years, the firm said.

“Greg is one of the top attorneys in the country specializing in accessibility law and we are excited to welcome him to the firm,” Guy N. Halgren, chairman of Sheppard Mullin, said in a statement. “His extensive experience in ADA and Fair Housing Act matters bolsters our capabilities and allows us to better service client needs,”

Hurley’s trial experience includes representing California in the largest class action certified against the state, involving more than 10 million claimants and 4,000 miles (6,400 kilometers) of California Department of Transportation pedestrian routes and 90 park-and-ride facilities, the firm said. He also defended a national class action against 80 golf courses owned and operated by Marriott.

Sheppard Mullin has 630 attorneys in 15 offices located in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

Proskauer Hires REIT Lawyer Michael Choate as Partner

Proskauer Rose LLP announced that Michael J. Choate joined the firm’s real estate capital markets group as a partner in Chicago. Choate and another lawyer joining Proskauer were previously at Shefsky & Froelich.

Choate advises publicly traded and non-listed real estate investment trusts in equity and debt offerings, mergers and acquisitions, and internalization transactions. He counsels publicly traded entities on matters of corporate governance, securities law, compliance, and proxy and tender-offer situations.

Proskauer has lawyers in the Americas, Europe and Asia.

Belkin Burden Brings in Lissner as Real Estate Partner

Belkin Burden Wenig & Goldman LLP, a real estate law firm, said Allison R. Lissner joined as a partner in the real estate transactional department in New York.

Lissner was previously a partner in the Manhattan office of Cole, Schotz, Meisel, Forman & Leonard PA.

She will focus primarily on commercial leasing, acquisitions, sales and financing. Her practice also includes handling the acquisition, development and disposition of vacant land, office buildings, apartment buildings, shopping centers and other properties, the firm said. She counsels clients on due diligence, financing and compliance.

Belkin Burden has about 50 lawyers in New York.

General Counsel

Drinker Biddle Partner Appointed General Counsel at Environ

Environ, an environmental, health, safety and sustainability consulting firm, appointed Samuel Mason, a former Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP partner, as its first general counsel.

Mason will handle Environ’s legal needs and counsel its board and global management committee. He will be based in the firm’s Philadelphia office.

While at Drinker Biddle, Mason was Environ’s primary external corporate counsel for more than 10 years.

Firm News

Littler Mendelson Names Millman as New York Office Head

Littler Mendelson PC named Bruce Millman as office managing shareholder in New York, beginning Jan. 1.

Millman counsels private- and public-sector employers on business and personnel strategies. He succeeds Craig Benson, who will return full-time to his employment litigation practice.

“Craig has done an excellent job in leading one of the firm’s largest offices, and we thank him for his service,” Tom Bender and Jeremy Roth, co-managing directors of Littler, said in a statement. “We are excited to have Bruce assume the OMS role. His leadership qualities, combined with his more than 35 years of legal experience, will undeniably benefit the office, the firm and our clients.”

Millman focuses on business restructuring, wage-and-hour and New York employment law, as well as labor-management relations, discrimination and harassment, employment policies, performance management, and termination and litigation strategies.

Littler Mendelson has more than 980 attorneys at 57 offices in the Americas.


Private Detectives’ Clients Face U.K. Data Protection Probe

Law firms and insurance companies may be among former clients of private detectives who used illegal methods to collect information that face a probe by the U.K.’s data-protection watchdog.

The Information Commissioner’s Office will examine 19 clients of four private investigators who were jailed last year for using illegal data-gathering methods, such as phone hacking, according to Keith Vaz, the office of Parliament’s Home Affairs Committee. Vaz said Christopher Graham, the information commissioner, will give the committee more details on Oct. 8.

“There are 19 clients that will now be investigated with another 11 awaiting further information,” Vaz said in an e-mailed statement. “We will seek assurances that the onward investigation will be conducted in the most efficient, comprehensive and speedy manner.”

The U.K.’s Serious Organised Crime Agency gave the committee a list of clients, asking it not to publish the names for fear of prejudicing future investigations. The list included 22 law firms, as well as 10 insurance companies, an oil company and eight companies in financial services.

Out of 98 names on the list, eight were investigated in the crime agency’s probe of hacking into mobile-phone accounts and blagging, or the use of deception to obtain private details, Vaz said. There’s no case against 24 and another 24 are based outside the U.K., he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Elizabeth Amon in Brooklyn, New York, at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at

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