Sidley Austin Hires Delaware’s Jacobs: Business of Law

Delaware Supreme Court Justice Jack B. Jacobs is joining Sidley Austin LLP’s Wilmington office as senior counsel on Oct. 1. He will be a member of the mergers and acquisitions transactional and litigation practices, as well as the corporate governance practice.

“The 29 years he has served in the Delaware judiciary have been the most eventful decades in the development of corporate law relating to public company mergers and corporate governance,” Thomas A. Cole, Sidley Austin’s former executive committee chairman, said in a statement. “As a participant in many pivotal decisions during that era, Justice Jacobs can lend invaluable insights to our clients and colleagues.”

Jacobs, who will retire June 25, has been on the Delaware Supreme Court since 2003. He was previously vice chancellor of the Delaware Chancery Court.


Covington, DLA Piper, Wolff & Samson: Lateral Moves Roundup

International public policy professional Sebastian Vos is joining Covington & Burling LLP to lead the European division of the firm’s global public policy and government affairs practice in Brussels.

Vos, who works for Fipra International, will focus on competition and technology-related public policy issues and continue his public policy work involving emerging technologies and services, the firm said.

Joining DLA Piper LLP is Karl Dial, who will be a partner in the litigation practice in Dallas. Dial, who is also a certified public accountant, joins from Norton Rose Fulbright.

Eight former Steptoe & Johnson LLP litigators are joining the Chicago firm Williams Montgomery & John Ltd. The group, led by partner Christopher J. Barber, includes Peter J. Meyer and Gary W. Garner, who join as partners. The Steptoe lawyers practice complex commercial litigation and arbitration and have experience in financial markets, bankruptcy and reinsurance matters.

The New Jersey firm Wolff & Samson PC added Beverly W. Lubit as a member of its intellectual-property group from Greenberg Traurig LLP.

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP announced that Joe Dowdy joins the Raleigh, North Carolina, office as a partner and member of the complex business litigation team from Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP.

Perkins Coie LLP said that Jonathan F. Atzen joined the Los Angeles office as a partner in the emerging-companies and venture capital practice from Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.

Locke Lord LLP added to its financial-services presence with the hiring of Timothy Kemp as a partner in the corporate and transactional department, the consumer-finance practice group, and the regulatory and transactional-insurance group in Chicago. He was previously with First American Financial Corp., most as recently deputy general counsel.

Law Firm News

Dewey Nonlawyer Workers Get $3 Million for Firing Without Notice

In the liquidation of law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, a decision in April by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Martin Glenn turned out to be worth $1.5 million for attorneys for a group of nonlawyer employees and $3 million for the 425 workers themselves.

One day after the Dewey law firm’s Chapter 11 filing in May 2012, lawyers for the fired employees initiated a class lawsuit alleging so-called Warn Act claims for mass firings without required notice under state and federal law.

In April, Glenn barred the liquidated firm from raising the faltering company and unforeseeable circumstances defenses because it hadn’t given workers required written notice.

They are to share $3 million while the New York firm Otten & Golden LLP will receive $1.5 million for representing the worker class.

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Husch Blackwell Takes on Health Law Firm Miles & Peters

Six-lawyer health law boutique Miles & Peters PC, which has offices in Denver and Phoenix, is joining Husch Blackwell LLP. Fred Miles, Kevin Peters, Jim Miles and Carol A. Manteuffel join as partners.


U.K. Fraud Prosecutor Triples Raids After Years of Bungled Cases

The U.K. Serious Fraud Office tripled the number of raids it carried out in the last year, in a sign the agency is trying to rebuild its image as a tough prosecutor after years of collapsed cases.

The SFO conducted 26 raids between April 2013 and March 2014, compared to eight the year before, according to London-based law firm Pinsent Masons LLP.

“There is an up-tick in the investigation of serious fraud by the agency,” said Barry Vitou, a U.K.-based lawyer at Pinsent Masons. “Headlines support that and data supports that. What they need now is some concrete positive results.”

That increase follows 12 months of no raids after searches in March 2011, when the SFO arrested U.K. property tycoons Vincent and Robert Tchenguiz. A London court ruled in July 2012 that the prosecutor presented “unfair and unjustified” evidence to convince a judge to grant the SFO search warrants for its investigation into loans the brothers made to Iceland’s Kaupthing Bank Hf before it collapsed in 2008. They’re suing the SFO for about 300 million pounds ($509 million), almost 10 times its annual budget. The case against them was dropped.

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