The Churn

December 12, 2008 2:59 PM

THE CHURN: Lateral Moves and Promotions in The Am Law 200

Posted by Rachel Breitman

The slow exodus of federal regulators and prosecutors have continued with law firms picking up talent from the nation's capital.

Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen and Loewy added Patrick Shen, who was special counsel for Immigration-related Unfair Employment Practices in the DJ's Civil Rights Division. Shen previously was policy and planning drector of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the Department of Homeland Security, and chief immigration counsel of the Senate Judiciary Committee. He returns to his position as Fragomen's director of global compliance.    

King & Spalding
's Washington, added Assistant United States Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, Courtney Trombly, as counsel to the special matters and government investigations practice. She'll handle corporate white-collar criminal and regulatory enforcement matters, civil litigation and internal investigations.

Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department Criminal Division Barry Sabin joined Latham & Watkins's litigation department. During his 18 years at Justice, Sabin prosecuted foreign corrupt practices, procurement fraud, and health care fraud cases. He joins former Justice teammate Alice Fisher, who rejoined Latham's litigation department in September.   

The year isn't over yet, but the taxman has come early to Sullivan & Cromwell.  The firm nabbed Internal Revenue Service chief counsel Donald Korb, who will go from leading 1,500 tax attorneys at the IRS to leading Sullivan's tax controversy practice starting next month. In two previous stints at the IRS, he worked as Assistant to the Commissioner and Attorney Advisor in the IRS Chief Counsel's office. Korb had also previously been a partner and chairman of the tax group at Thompson Hine.

Countless firms continue to snap up more Thelen and Heller Ehrman lawyers, while several lawyers with longstanding ties to firms make bold jumps to new homes.

After swallowing 24 Heller Ehrman attorneys this year, Davis Wright Tremaine was still hungry for more. The firm added Kerry Shea, a former partner with Thelen to the national energy practice in San Francisco. Shea works with facilities that use geothermal, wind, biomass, landfill gas, and solar renewable energy sources.

Meanwhile, Andres Benach and Thomas Ragland emigrated to Duane Morris's immigration practice group in Washington, D.C. from immigration boutique Maggio & Kattar, where they lead the immigration litigation practice.  Benach handles complex removal, asylum, naturalization, and federal litigation cases. Ragland focuses on immigration litigation and complex removal proceedings, administrative and federal court appeals, habeas corpus actions and naturalization petitions.

Fried Frank was ready to make a deal with Gregory Gnall, a new broker-dealer specialist and a new special counsel in the firm’s asset management practice. Gnall was most recently counsel at White & Case. Gnall has advised domestic and international broker-dealers on the Securities Exchange Act matters, plus cross border deals, margin rules, and regulatory examinations.

K&L Gates is indisputably pleased with their choice of new commercial disputes partner Eli Mattioli, who is also a former Thelen partner. The litigator and arbitration specialist handles real estate, international business transactions, corporate and partnership law, and securities matters.

Also fresh from Thelen is Morgan Lewis's newest employee benefits and executive compensation practice partner.  Benjamin Delancy, the former chair of Thelen's employee benefits practice will handle equity compensation, nonqualified deferred compensation, and change-of-control agreements and retirement and health and welfare programs.

Morrison & Foerster thinks that Mark Brooks is a prime piece of real estate for the firm’s global real estate practice. The new member of the firm’s Hong Kong office, who recently left Paul Hastings, will cover real estate and private equity transactions throughout Asia, including China, India, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, and the Philippines.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom scored three new white-collar crime partners from Clifford Chance: John Carroll, David Meister, and Warren Feldman. Carroll headed the U.S. white-collar practice and was Clifford Chance's managing partner for the Americas from 2002 to 2004. He was a member of Rogers & Wells before it merged with Clifford Chance, and previously worked in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, where he was Chief of the Securities and Commodities Fraud. Carroll, Meister, also a former assistant U.S. attorney in the securities and commodities fraud unit, and Feldman will handle white-collar crime investigations related to the financial crisis. As we reported earlier, Skadden lost Timothy Pohl, a cohead of the corporate restructuring group Thursday to the financial services firm Lazard, where he will be managing director of the restructuring group.

Finally, Wiley Rein has no problem communicating its respect for former Federal Communications Commissioner Tyrone Brown.  Brown rejoins the communications group after a 3-year term as a visiting professor at Duke University and a stint as a founding member and vice chairman of the board of Iridium Satellite, LLC, a provider of global satellite voice and data communications. 

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