James E. Tyrrell Jr., the Patton Boggs LLP litigator who was the key firm partner involved in a lawsuit targeting Chevron Corp. (CVX:US) for pollution in Ecuador, joined Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP as a partner in Morristown, New Jersey, and New York.
His hiring follows the June 1 combination of Squire Sanders and Patton Boggs, which created Squire Patton Boggs, which will be among the 25 biggest law firms in the world, with about 1,600 attorneys in 21 countries.
The merger was almost derailed by controversy surrounding the Chevron case. Patton Boggs last month agreed to pay $15 million to settle Chevron’s lawsuit over the firm’s involvement in obtaining a $9.5 billion judgment against the oil company in Ecuador, after a federal judge found an attorney from another firm had resorted to fraud in obtaining the award.
Multiple reports about the planned merger said that a condition included barring Tyrrell from joining the new firm. Neither firm’s leadership would answer a question about the reports during a press call last week.
At Edwards Wildman, Tyrrell will focus on litigation, with a specific emphasis on toxic-tort, product-liability and complex commercial litigation. He also has been lead counsel for the City of New York in the World Trade Center litigation.
Several Patton Boggs partners have departed since the firms’ combination was announced last week. Three high-profile election and political law attorneys moved to Jones Day, and Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP added a team of seven health-care policy lawyers and advisers. Akin Gump said yesterday that communications and information technology lawyer Jennifer Richter will also join the firm from Patton Boggs, along with several other lawyers.
Holland & Knight LLP yesterday announced seven Patton Boggs hires, including a team of six transactional business lawyers who represent financial institutions. Joining the firm’s financial-services practice as partners are Norman Antin, Jeffrey Haas and Kevin Houlihan in Washington and Mark Goldschmidt and Shawn Turner in Denver. William Levay also joined as a senior counsel in Washington.
Government contracts lawyer Mary Beth Bosco joined the Holland & Knight Washington office.
Covington, Allen & Overy, Weil: Lateral Partner Moves Roundup
Phillip Warren, former chief of the San Francisco office of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division, joined Covington & Burling LLP as a global antitrust and competition law partner in San Francisco.
Jake Keaveny will join Allen & Overy LLP’s high yield practice in the London office from Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP.
Reena Gogna will join Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP’s London office as a partner in the banking and finance practice from Latham & Watkins LLP.
Law Firm News
Shook Hardy Opens in Denver with Boutique Sander Ingebretsen
The Denver boutique litigation firm Sander Ingebretsen & Wake PC joined Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP to open a Denver office.
Seven attorneys and staff will join Shook Hardy, including Kirk Ingebretsen, who will be the Denver office head. The lawyers have experience in complex commercial trial and appellate work in banking and financial services, employment, insurance, corporate governance and securities.
Wachtell, Proskauer on Ventas Agreement to Buy ARC Healthcare
Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is acting as legal counsel to Ventas Inc., the biggest U.S. health-care real estate investment trust by market value, on its agreement to buy American Realty Capital Healthcare Trust Inc. for $2.6 billion.
Proskauer Rose LLP and Venable LLP are providing legal counsel to ARC.
Wachtell Lipton’s team was led by partners Robin Panovka, real estate M&A; Ronald C. Chen, corporate; and Jodi J. Schwartz, tax. Additional partners include David E. Kahan, executive compensation and benefits; and Gregory E. Pessin, restructuring and finance.
The Proskauer team is led by partners Daniel Ganitsky, M&A, and real estate capital markets group co-heads Steven Lichtenfeld and Peter Fass. Additional assistance comes from partners Michael Choate, corporate real estate; Lorenzo Borgogni, M&A; Les Loffman, tax; and Ira Bogner, employee benefits.
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Dewey Managers Use Indictment to Fend Off Lawsuit
The three former top executives at Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, indicted by the Manhattan district attorney for falsely portraying the failing law firm’s financial condition, are using the criminal proceedings to halt a lawsuit by an insurance company that bought $35 million in notes.
Aviva Life & Annuity Co., based in Des Moines, Iowa, alleged in a complaint filed in December that it was induced to buy the secured notes in April 2010 by Steven Davis, Dewey’s former chairman; Stephen DiCarmine, its former executive director; and Joel Sanders, the ex-finance chief. According to Aviva, the men represented Dewey as “financially sound” when there was $100 million in “undisclosed debt to certain highly compensated partners.”
A federal judge in Des Moines refused to dismiss the suit last month, saying Aviva made a sufficient case. Meanwhile, the three ex-Dewey managers were indicted in New York.
In papers filed in federal court in Des Moines last week, the three asked the judge to halt the civil case until the criminal proceedings are concluded. They cite the New York judge as saying that the trial will begin in January and last as long as six months.
Dewey, which once had 1,300 lawyers, filed for Chapter 11 protection in May 2012 and implemented a liquidating plan in March 2013.
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