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December 5, 2008 2:49 PM

No Way! Jones Day Retained as Bankruptcy Counsel for Chrysler, Say Reports

Posted by Brian Baxter

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Chrysler has hired Jones Day as bankruptcy counsel in the event that a federal bridge loan isn't approved and the automaker needs to file for Chapter 11.

We hate to say that we told you so, but we've speculated for awhile as to the firm's role on a potential Big Three bankruptcy filing. Jones Day has the requisite Rust Belt connections and we even painstakingly analyzed pictures from congressional hearings to point out that individuals bearing uncanny resemblances to bankruptcy practice founding partner David Heiman and litigation chief Thomas "Tim" Cullen, Jr., were sitting behind seats reserved for Chrysler executives.

So given the Journal report and the borderline-irrefutable photographic evidence, would the Jones Day lawyers--and not their clones from another dimension--finally acknowledge that they're representing a Detroit automaker contemplating bankruptcy?

"You're the guy who had my picture," Heiman said good-naturedly upon answering a reporter's phone call. Then he stopped himself. "But I guess I shouldn't have admitted that."

Predictably, Heiman promptly declined further comment.

The Journal reports that restructuring cohead Corinne Ball is handling the Chrysler matter for the firm. Ball has experience with Big Auto work, helping Toledo-based auto parts supplier Dana emerge from Chapter 11 earlier this year and representing General Motors in its $1.2 billion acquisition of Korean automaker Daewoo in 2002.

We called Ball to see if she would come clean on Jones Day's retention, but she was out of the office and unavailable for comment. We're keeping the paparazzi on standby.

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