Legal Marketplace Analysis

This year we single out 583 practitioners from 362 firms in 30 countries who are considered leaders in business crime defence law.

Several firms stand out in our research for the high number of inclusions they receive, with Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr and Zuckerman Spaeder leading the way. This trio of firms achieve eight listings apiece. They are closely followed by UK firms Kingsley Napley and Peters & Peters and New York-based Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello, each of whom have seven individuals singled out. Similarly BCL Burton Copeland, Jones Day and Williams & Connolly all perform strongly this year.

We also identify the most highly regarded lawyers in the world in three different sections: the US, England and the rest of the world, as well as the top six barristers at the UK bar. 

 

Who's Who Legal: Business Crime Defence 2014
Most Highly Regarded Individuals
Lawyer Firm
The US
Reid Weingarten Steptoe & Johnson, Washington, DC
John Keker Keker & Van Nest, San Francisco
Elkan Abramowitz Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello, New York
Dan Webb Winston & Strawn, Chicago
William Jeffress Jr Baker Botts, Washington, DC
Brian Sun Jones Day, Los Angeles
Gary Naftalis Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel, New York
Abbe David Lowell Chadbourne & Parke, Washington, DC
 
England
Peter Binning Corker Binning, London
Louise Hodges Kingsley Napley, London
Stephen Gentle Simmons & Simmons, London
Elizabeth Robertson K&L Gates, London
Michael O'Kane Peters & Peters, London
 
The UK Bar
Clare Montgomery QC Matrix Chambers, London
Ian Winter QC Cloth Fair Chambers, London
Nicholas Purnell QC Cloth Fair Chambers, London
Hugo Keith QC Three Raymond Buildings, London
Alexander Cameron QC Three Raymond Buildings, London
David Perry QC 6 King's Bench Walk, London
 
Rest of the World
Marc Henzelin Lalive, Geneva
Stéphane Bonifassi Lebray & Associés, Paris
Kai Hart-Hoenig Dr Kai Hart-Hoenig Rechtsanwälte, Wiesbaden
Antenor Madruga FeldensMadruga, Brasilia
Paul Gully-Hart Schellenberg Wittmer, Geneva
Jonathan Midgley Haldanes Solicitors and Notaries, Hong Kong
Berjis Desai J Sagar Associates, Mumbai
Gerallt Owen Withers, Singapore
Roberto Pisano Studio Legale Pisano, Milan
Joost Italianer NautaDutilh, Amsterdam

 

 

 

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INTERNATIONAL

“Global heavyweight” Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom is one of the best represented firms in our research. It achieves eight listings across the firm’s offices in New York, Los Angeles, Palo Alto, London and Washington, DC. Worldwide head of the firm’s litigation/controversy practice David Zornow is one of a trio of New York-based practitioners selected. He founded the firm’s practice in 1989 and is hailed as a “trailblazer” of white-collar defence in the US. He has represented a range of “high-profile” defendants including Yves Benhamou, the French doctor involved in the FrontPoint Partners insider trading case, and former Intel executive Rajiv Goel. The “stellar” Warren Feldman has more than two decades of experience, boasting particular expertise in criminal antitrust, health-care fraud, tax evasion, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and money laundering. John Carroll is a “real favourite” with financial institutions in need of advice, especially regarding investigations following the 2008 financial crisis.

Los Angeles-based Richard Marmaro leads Skadden’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement and white-collar defence practice and is a “very prominent figure” in the legal market. He is “one of the best litigators in the country” with a “phenomenal track record” that includes successfully defending William Ruehle, the former CFO of Broadcom. At the Palo Alto office, Allen Ruby is the “go-to guy” for individuals and corporations in complex civil and criminal cases before the state and federal courts.

In Washington, DC the “exceptionally good” Michele Roberts is “very highly rated” by both her clients and peers. She has an “invaluable understanding” of this area due to her eight years in the office of the public defender service for the District of Columbia and has “very extensive trial experience”. Gregory Craig is “very active” in representing clients in Department of Justice (DOJ) and SEC inquiries. London lawyer Matthew Cowie spent 11 years at the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and is “hugely knowledgeable” in the area of global corporate investigations.

Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr also has eight practitioners recognised across two different continents. Four Boston-based individuals come highly nominated with chair of the firm’s investigations and criminal litigation practice group Stephen Jonas garnering particular praise. He is a “leading figure” at the Massachusetts bar who is “very well known” for representing corporations and individuals in government investigations and criminal matters. “First-class” litigator Karen Green is a former deputy US attorney for the federal District of Massachusetts with particular expertise in criminal health-care fraud. The “very experienced” Robert Keefe and “talented” trial lawyer Emily Schulman also stand out.

At the Washington, DC office a trio of individuals are listed, including chair of the firm’s litigation/controversy department Howard Shapiro. He is a former general counsel to the FBI and boasts “unparalleled knowledge” of white-collar criminal defence. Peers “cannot recommend him highly enough” and clients consider him their “first choice” when it comes to complex and sensitive issues. Past solicitor-general of the United States Seth Waxman is hailed as an “outstanding litigator” and former director of enforcement at the SEC William McLucas is “highly sought after” by companies, boards and audit committees in need of advice on corporate crises.

In London, the “simply excellent” Stephen Pollard boasts a “brilliant track record”, which includes representing Vincent Tchenguiz in his successful challenge to the SFO investigation relating to the collapse of Kaupthing Bank.

K&L Gates is home to five practitioners selected this year, including one of our most highly regarded lawyers in England: Elizabeth Robertson. She is praised by peers for cultivating a “first-class practice” at the firm in the two years since she joined from Addleshaw Goddard and has “undoubtedly made it a destination group”. Clients “would not hesitate to recommend her” and value her “solutions-oriented approach”. In Washington, DC Carol Elder Bruce is “hugely in demand” as a litigator both in trials and appeals, and also for hearings and proceedings before the US Senate and House of Representatives.  The “superb” Jeffrey Bornstein boasts almost “unmatched experience of SEC enforcement” and has been involved in many significant cases, including the Galleon insider-trading case.

Four New York-based lawyers and one London practitioner from Sullivan & Cromwell garner recognition. Managing partner of the firm’s criminal defence and investigations team and former president of the New York Bar Association Samuel Seymour especially stands out. He has “brilliantly handled” the resolution of multiple government investigations, notably those involving the Bank of New York, UBS, Statoil, HSBC, Banco Popular de Puerto Rico, ANZ Bank and Standard Chartered Bank. Deputy Steven Peikin has “enviable experience” on the prosecution side and is “renowned” for his “top-notch” representation of the Goldman Sachs Group and many of its directors and senior executives in an insider trading case. In London, Louise Delahunty is described as “incredibly smart and very client-focused”. She is “especially good” at UK Bribery Act compliance issues and has “strong know-how” of SFO investigations.

 

THE US

With eight listings in our research, “leading” litigation outfit Zuckerman Spaeder is one of the best-represented firms in this edition. Its Washington, DC office is a “hub of activity” with five lawyers singled out, including founding partner Roger Zuckerman. He is described as a “dean” of white-collar criminal law in the US and career highlights include representing the president of Enron throughout lengthy grand jury, SEC and civil matters arising from the company’s collapse, and the president of the Stanford International Bank in connection with the collapse of the Stanford Financial Corporation. William Taylor III is hailed as a “superstar” and has over four decades of litigation experience. He has been involved in some of the most notable criminal cases of recent years, including representing Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Representative Tom Feeney and Thomas Welch, the former president of the Salt Lake City Olympic Committee.

“Formidable” trial lawyer Paula Junghans acts for clients in an “impressively broad range” of criminal matters, including conspiracy, bank and health care fraud, currency transactions offences, environmental crime and money laundering.  The “fantastic” Steven Salky is currently acting for the former chief business officer of Freddie Mac in class action and also SEC cases arising from disclosures concerning the company’s single family guarantee portfolio. The former chair of the District of Columbia Bar Criminal Law and Individual Rights Section, Blair Brown is a “must for inclusion” according to our sources.

Three further individuals are recognised; in Baltimore the “gifted” William Murphy has tried to verdict numerous criminal cases at both state and federal level. New York lawyer Paul Shechtman is considered an “industry guru”, with clients praising his “flexibility and professionalism”. At the Tampa office “wonderful” Morris “Sandy” Weinberg boasts an “outstanding track record” and is considered to be a “really safe pair of hands”.

Specialist outfit Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello is home to seven of our experts, including Elkan Abramowitz, one of our most nominated practitioners in the US. Our sources describe him as a “towering figure” in the legal market and “cannot recommend him highly enough”. He is a “superb strategist and tactician” who has represented a host of well-known individuals and corporates over the course of his “illustrious career” to date. Jodi Misher Peikin is a “leading light” of the criminal defence bar who “knows everything there is to know” about regulatory enforcement. Lawrence Iason is hailed as the “cream of the crop” for securities regulation and enforcement, and frequently represents clients in SEC, DOJ and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) proceedings. The “marvellous” Robert Anello “stands out” for his “first-class” litigation skills and currently serves as president of the Federal Bar Council.

The “very well-known” Paul Grand recently represented Anil Kumar, a key witness in the trial of Raj Rajaratnam, and successfully argued for a sentence of probation. The “smart, intelligent and thoughtful” Richard Weinberg and the “technically brilliant and extremely reliable” Jonathan Sack complete the firm’s listings.

Six US-based practitioners from Jones Day are singled out, with Brian Sun of the Los Angeles office earning a high number of accolades. He is considered “one of the most prominent trial lawyers in the country” and a “simply outstanding practitioner”. His notable cases include representing former Clinton fundraiser Johnny Chung and former Orange County Sheriff Michael Carona. In Washington, DC, the “distinguished” Peter Romatowski oversees the firm’s securities litigation and SEC enforcement practice. Chicago-based Daniel Reidy “brilliantly leads” the business and tort litigation practice and is a “top choice of counsel” for companies under criminal investigation. George Moscarino is one of two individuals recognised from the Cleveland office. He is “undeniably a star”, having advised numerous corporations and their management in complex criminal cases including General Motors, JC Penney and the Philippine National Bank.

Leading Washington, DC litigation firm Williams & Connolly is home to six individuals selected for inclusion. Brendan Sullivan Jr is a “truly fine lawyer” with one peer stating that “everyone aspires to his level within the legal market”. He is “especially well known” for his representation of individuals, which has included former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros and Senator Ted Stevens. The “frighteningly bright” John Villa is “the guy for securities and financial services-related litigation on the East Coast”. He is especially renowned for his expertise in representing law firms when they are in difficulties. Robert Cary is the “first choice” when it comes to high-stakes appeals, with clients valuing his “responsive and calm approach”. The “excellent” David Zinn is noted for his “pragmatism and deep commercial understanding”.

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher has five individuals across three of its US offices singled out. Joseph Warin is chair of the firm’s Washington, DC office and one of two lawyers it fields to this edition.  He is a “pleasure to come across” according to peers, who also cite him as “at the top of his game” for defending against regulatory enforcement actions. In New York, the “incredible” Lawrence Zweifach is a “huge name” in the white-collar crime and investigations field having represented UBS in resolution of investigations involving the alleged manipulation of LIBOR. He is also a “real favourite” with accountancy firms for audit liability; he successfully acted for Ernst & Young in class actions and related proceedings arising from the Madoff investment scandal. Los Angeles-based Debra Wong Yang is co-chair of the firm’s crisis management, white collar defence and investigations, and information technology and data privacy practice groups. She is a former US attorney for the central district of California and was selected to serve on President George W Bush’s corporate fraud task force. She is described as “one of the most respected and admired practitioners in the country” and is considered to be “the gold standard” of the legal market for the West Coast. 

Five practitioners from Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison’s “stellar” white collar crime practice garner recognition, including co-chair of the litigation team Theodore Wells Jr. He is “greatly valued” by his clients due to his “responsiveness, sensitivity and creativity” and is an “extremely effective advocate” according to those who come up against him in court. Also in New York is the “unbelievably good” Mark Pomerantz who is the “first port of call” for CEOs in need of representation for proceedings bought against them by the DOJ or SEC. At the Washington, DC office Beth Wilkinson is a “star of the courtroom” and boasts a “phenomenal roster of clients” that includes Pfizer, Philip Morris and the National Football League. She is recognised for playing a “pivotal role” in turning the tide in some of the most significant cases of the past decade and was also appointed by the Federal Trade Commission to lead its investigation into Google in 2013. 

Sidley Austin achieves five inclusions, with individuals from its Washington, DC, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco offices selected. Kimberley Dunne co-chairs the firm’s white collar: government litigation and investigations group and is the former chief of the public corruption and government fraud section of the United States Attorney’s Office in the Central District of California. She is hailed as a “brilliant litigator” and an “uncontested specialist” in healthcare fraud and abuse. “Investigations guru” Scott Lassar has “unbelievable experience” in both public and private practice, and Karen Popp is “hugely sought after” in matters pertaining to SEC enforcement and congressional inquiries.

William Jeffress Jr of Baker Botts is one of the most highly rated individuals in the world according to our research. Based in Washington, DC, he has nearly four decades of experience and is known for his “truly exceptional handling of highly complex criminal cases”. Peers around the globe remark on “the breadth and depth of his expertise”, which includes fraud, government procurement and public corruption. He has represented Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Vice President Cheney’s former chief of staff, and acted for ABC News in a landmark case alleging fraud and trespass during news gathering. Three other lawyers from the firm’s DC office are also singled out, with Mary Spearing achieving particular acclaim. A former chief of the fraud section at the DOJ, she has “almost unequalled experience” in FCPA matters and recent clients include the former CEO of Rite Aid, Noble and the Sinclair Oil Refinery.

John Keker, co-founding partner of Keker Van Nest in San Francisco, is “one of North America’s finest practitioners”. He has acted in corporate criminal trials for over 40 years and is “much admired” by peers who comment on his “profound impact” on this field of law in the US. Three further lawyers from the firm feature, with Jan Nielsen Little coming particularly highly nominated. She is described as a “first-rate strategic thinker” and an “obvious choice” for recognition in this guide.

Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel is home to the “magnificent” Gary Naftalis; a “point of reference” in the New York legal market. He is the firm’s co-chair and “superbly leads” its litigation department. He boasts an “unrivalled history” in this field, having been involved in numerous notable cases including representing Michael Eisner, the CEO of The Walt Disney Company, in the shareholders, derivative lawsuit relating to the hiring and termination of Michael Ovitz, and the City of New York in the inquiry by the New York County District Attorney relating to the fire at the Deutsche Bank building. The “really excellent” Barry Berke is “incredibly effective in the courtroom”.

Reid Weingarten of Steptoe & Johnson in Washington, DC, is our most highly regarded individual in the US and a worldwide leader in this field. He is described as a “giant” of the international business crime bar and is a “force to be reckoned with” in the courtroom according to those who have come up against him. He is renowned for having a “winning way with judges and juries” and peers especially admire his “brilliant analytical mind and engaging approach”. 

Chadbourne & Parke’s chair of white-collar defence, regulatory investigations and litigation Abbe David Lowell is considered an “icon” in this area due to his “phenomenal track record”. His high-profile clients have included public officials, businessmen, international organisations, and state and local governments. Significant recent matters include United States v John Edwards and United States v Hector Martinez.

 

ENGLAND

Several firms and individuals stand out in England for their business crime defence practices. Peters & Peters garners seven inclusions with head of the firm’s business crime defence team Michael O’Kane singled out as one of our top individuals.  Described as “very intelligent”, he is hailed as “the best in the country” for criminal cartels, and is also considered to be a “specialist” at economic sanctions, extradition, corruption and FCA investigations. Significant cases he has been involved in include the British Airways passenger fuel surcharge cartel prosecution and a high-level corruption case involving the Royal Cayman Islands police service. Special counsel Monty Raphael QC has a legal career that spans over five decades and he is “incredibly well known” for dealing with white-collar criminal cases at the highest level. His expertise covers corruption, tax delinquency, money laundering and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulatory matters, with peers describing him as “the senior statesman” of the UK legal market. He founded the business crime committee of the International Bar Association and is a former chair of its anti-corruption committee. As one peer said “there are not enough superlatives to describe his practice”.

Extradition “guru” Anand Doobay acts for individuals, corporations and governments. He is described as a “really safe pair of hands” and “very dedicated and trustworthy” with politically sensitive cross-border or multi-jurisdictional matters being “his forte”. The “really fantastic” David McCluskey is considered a “tremendous asset to the firm”. He is the “go-to investigations guy” in London and is known for being “calm under pressure and always offering spot on counsel”. Neil Swift is “undoubtedly top-tier” and boasts “superb knowledge across the full spectrum” of white-collar crime.

Kingsley Napley is also home to seven of the leading lawyers this year. Louise Hodges is a “star” of the London legal market and is vice-chair of the European Criminal Bar Association and chair of the Fraud Lawyers Association. She is “revered” by her peers for her “incredible” representation of individuals subject to financial regulatory and/or criminal investigations and is “especially strong” on matters with an international dimension. Michael Caplan QC is “an authority” on criminal law and is chair of the City of London Law Society’s corporate crime and corruption committee and the police appeals tribunal. Clients “cannot praise him highly enough” and value his “diligence, responsiveness and thoughtfulness”.

The “very prominent” Angus McBride boasts a “stellar profile” both in England and around the world. He is known for “giving 110 per cent to cases” and handling them with “the utmost sensitivity”. A recent highlight of his “formidable career” includes successfully defending former News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks for offences arising out of the phone-hacking scandal. Stephen Parkinson heads the firm’s criminal and regulatory litigation group and is “in a class of his own” when it comes to handling public inquiry work, having been involved in 10 significant inquires in recent years including the Hutton and Leveson inquiries. The “gifted” Jo Rickards recently joined the firm and has an “enviable reputation” in this field. She has acted in a string of important matters, such as the phone-hacking trial and the Libor case, and has also acted for former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi in connection with corruption charges he faced in Italy. She will “undoubtedly bring even greater strength and experience” to the firm’s practice.

Five practitioners from BCL Burton Copeland are singled out, with the “really excellent” Brian Spiro considered “particularly eminent” in the legal market. He is chair of the business crime defence committee of the International Bar Association and is the “lawyer of choice” for those facing high stakes matters. He is “especially strong” on SFO Crown Prosecution Service and HM Revenue & Customs prosecutions and investigations, and clients value his “originality and ability to think on his feet”. The firm’s founding partner, Ian Burton, has been “instrumental” in building the firm into its market leading position and “paved the way with his own phenomenal expertise”. He is hailed as a “trailblazer” for business crime defence law in the UK and “stand outs” for his ability to “seamlessly coordinate” complex multi-jurisdictional cases. “Leading light” Harry Travers is “frighteningly intelligent” and “incredibly committed” to his practice. He is especially renowned for his involvement in cases brought by the SFO, with peers describing him as one of the “foremost fraud experts of his generation”. Richard Sallybanks is a “gifted litigator” and is “especially strong” at overseas corruption and sanctions-busting cases. Clients value his “versatility” and describe him as an “exceptionally good strategic thinker”.

Stephen Gentle of Simmons & Simmons is one of two lawyers the firm has recognised in England and he performs very highly in our research. He is a “big name” in the London legal market due to his “impressive knowledge” of anti-bribery regulations, investigations and proceedings. He is also “amazingly good” at international criminal matters, notably extradition proceedings, sanctions breaches and mutual legal assistance requests where he acts for corporations, individuals and governments. The “excellent” Nick Benwell is co-chair of the IBA anti-corruption committee. He is “very active” in corruption investigations involving the SFO, SEC and DOJ and other international enforcement authorities. At the Paris office the firm also has the “fabulous” Etienne Kowalski recognised, who is “very knowledgeable” on the healthcare sector.

Peter Binning of Corker Binning is our leading English practitioner, achieving more accolades than any other lawyer in this jurisdiction. He is “globally renowned” for his “truly exceptional skills” in fraud and regulatory litigation. He boasts an “outstanding understanding” of all aspects of business crime, including corruption, cartels and tax evasion and clients “cannot find enough superlatives to do him justice”. The “eminent” David Corker is also “greatly respected”, especially for his investigations work. He has a “phenomenal understanding” of SFO proceedings, with clients describing him as “undoubtedly the lawyer you want by your side” in crucial matters.

 

THE UK BAR

The UK bar is very well represented in this edition and several individuals in particular stand out. Clare Montgomery QC of Matrix Chambers garners more nominations than any other barrister in our research. Fellow barristers and solicitors describe her as “stunningly good”, “terrifyingly bright” and a “major figure” at the criminal and fraud bar. Her prominent cases include Dabas v High Court of Justice (Madrid), the leading case on the European arrest warrant; and ICAC v A FACC, regarding the Court of Final Appeal decision on the abolition of the right to silence under the Bribery Ordinance. At the same set Tim Owen QC is described as “sublime in the courtroom” and a “pleasure to work alongside”. Lord Ken Macdonald QC boasts a “first-class mind” and is a “fearless advocate”. He spent five years as Director of Public Prosecutions and “knows more about criminal prosecution than anyone else”.

Three Raymond Buildings is home to two of our “stars” of the criminal bar. Hugo Keith QC has a “razor-sharp mind” and is renowned “for getting results”. In the past year alone he has been involved in the Gary McKinnon case, the Shrien Dewani extradition and the SFO investigation into Libor. The “terrific” Alexander Cameron QC is head of chambers and a “master of criminal law”, who especially excels at intricate fraud and bribery and corruption matters. Clients rave about his “spot-on judgement, high-level of client service and incredible commitment to cases”. Five other barristers from the set garner recognition, including the “celebrated” Trevor Burke QC, who is known for his “winning way” with juries, and the “simply stunning” Patrick Gibbs QC, who is “without question a leading silk”.

At Cloth Fair Chambers, Ian Winter QC is praised by solicitors for his “brilliant manner” when handling clients, notably in complex and stressful cases. He is described as being “at the top of his game” and is lauded for his knowledge of DOJ investigations, making him the “first port of call” for UK nationals involved in DOJ inquiries. The “greatly admired” Nicholas Purnell QC is “a force to be reckoned with” in the courtroom, due to his “fierce intellect and immense experience”. He is currently acting for a director at Mabey & Johnson in the first contested sanctions case, and has “made waves” with his cartel fraud work. Three further lawyers from the set are listed, with John Kelsey-Fry QC receiving a high-level of recommendations. He is hailed as a “genius” in and out of the courtroom and has been counsel in numerous significant cases, including representing Harry Redknapp in HMRC proceedings and acting for Chris Hume.

David Perry QC at 6 King’s Bench Walk performs incredibly strongly in our research this year, with peers and clients commenting on his “commitment” and “formidable presence” in the courtroom. As former Treasury Counsel he has acted in some of the most important criminal trials of recent years and regularly appears before the Supreme Court, Privy Court and Court of Appeal.

 

REST OF THE WORLD

Europe is home to a host of top-tier business crime defence practitioners with several firms and individuals standing out. Dutch firm Wladimiroff Advocaten achieves five listings, with the “prominent” Michail Wladimiroff earning particular acclaim from his peers. He is described as a “doyen” of the corporate criminal bar in the Netherlands with a “wealth of experience” advising boards, management and individuals. “Seasoned expert” Ed van Liere is “frequently seen” in high-profile fraud cases, including the Vestia fraud investigation. The “remarkable” Robbert de Bree is described as a “top calibre lawyer” who is “very active” before the Dutch Supreme Court, the European Court of Justice and the Human Rights Court.

NautaDutilh has two lawyers listed, including Joost Italianer, one of our most highly regarded practitioners worldwide. He is a “top selection” for leading banks, financial institutions and individuals in need of counsel, due to his “incredible understanding” of compliance and enforcement. He is “particularly well known” for his involvement in insider trading cases and internal investigations for major banks. Bert Fibbe is a “real specialist” on tax and environmental (as well as economic) crime and is praised for his “business nous”.

German firm HammPartner Rechtsanwälte is home to four of those recognised in this edition. Founding partner Rainer Hamm is “at the forefront of the country’s criminal bar” and is credited with developing “one of the best specialist firms in this field” in Europe. Regina Michalke is a “real authority” on bribery matters and is also lauded for her expertise in environmental infringement.

Kai Hart-Hoenig at his own firm in Wiesbaden boasts a “longstanding reputation” in the international business crime defence legal market. Those who have hired him value his “detailed and solution-orientated advice” and the “extremely efficient” service he provides. Clients include German and foreign banks, insurers and trading companies as well as individuals.

Two Swiss lawyers feature in our list of top lawyers in the world, with Geneva-based Marc Henzelin of Lalive being the most highly nominated. He is hailed as a “superstar” litigator in the fields of asset recovery, crime and extradition and is also noted for being “exceptionally thorough and efficient” in investigations. Both clients and peers consider his judgement and expertise as “second to none” and “would always recommend him”. At the same firm, Sonja Maeder Morvant is described as a “very sound practitioner” and a “familiar face” in multi-jurisdictional proceedings. 

Schellenberg Wittmer’s Paul Gully-Hart is also among the leading individuals in this edition, with peers hailing him as “world class”. He heads the firm’s white-collar crime group and has developed a “very fine practice” in this field. According to one enthusiastic peer he is “the guy financial institutions, major corporations and individuals turn to when the regulators are on their backs”. Three other lawyers from the firm are also included, with Peter Burckhardt in Zurich achieving particular acclaim for his dispute resolution skills.

Paris practitioner Stéphane Bonifassi of Lebray & Associés is “the best for handling delicate investigations” and boasts a “real talent for absorbing and analysing large amounts of information”. He is a former co-chair of the business crime committee of the International Bar Association and a “real font of knowledge” especially in regards to anti-corruption compliance.

Roberto Pisano at his own white-collar crime boutique in Milan is “greatly respected” for his “stellar practice” which encompasses all aspects of business crime, including corruption, market abuse and false accounting, tax crimes, fraud, bankruptcy, environmental and health and safety crimes, and money laundering. Fellow lawyers admire the “breadth and depth of his expertise” and clients consider him a “font of knowledge” and “very reliable, efficient and responsive”.

In Latin America, Brazilian lawyer Antenor Madruga of FeldensMadruga is a “prestigious figure” in the region. He is a former federal attorney who held several positions in the Brazilian government, most notably as National Secretary of Justice, and Director of Assets Recovery and International Cooperation. Peers comment on his “unbelievable knowledge” of criminal law and praise his “outstanding technical abilities and top class counsel”.

Hong Kong lawyer Jonathan Midgley of Haldanes is “one of the most successful criminal lawyers around” and is “prominent” due to his representation of the defendant in the first big business crime prosecution in the country. He is also “one of the leaders” in extradition law for which he boasts a “global reputation”.

At J Sagar Associates, Mumbai-based Berjis Desai “always delivers exceptional client service”, with one impressed source stating that “there are few people who work harder and care more”.

The “wonderful” Gerallt Owen at Withers focuses on domestic and international investigations, fraud, corporate crime, disciplinary proceedings and regulation. He has a “very high profile” both in Singapore, where he is based, and the UK, due to his “extensive experience” of dealing with authorities in both these jurisdictions. Fellow practitioners laud his “sharp analytical mind” and clients value his “flexibility and commitment”.

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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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