White Collar Criminal Defense & Government Investigations

White collar criminal defense matters require trial lawyers who are not afraid to fight for their clients in conference rooms or courtrooms. This is the cornerstone on which our reputation is built. With an unmatched depth of experience in handling complex white collar criminal cases from investigation through trial and appeal, we regularly represent corporate and individual clients in inquiries and investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice, foreign authorities, state attorneys general, local prosecutors, and in all stages of white collar criminal litigation. Our services range from advising targets of grand jury investigations and witnesses who must appear before them, to guiding clients through the indictment, pretrial, negotiation phases, and representing our clients at trial and on appeal. We also frequently handle matters for individual and corporate clients in parallel investigations by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, self-regulatory organizations, congressional committees, and state and federal agencies.

Over the past several years, we have been at the forefront of every major white collar issue. Our lawyers are thought leaders who have been recognized for their trial skills by professional organizations, lecture frequently on issues relating to criminal law, and regularly contribute to various well-known publications. The lawyers at our firm have a broad range of prior experience in government service, including:

  • Twelve Assistant U.S. Attorneys (SDNY and EDNY)
  • Two Chiefs of the Criminal Division (SDNY and EDNY)
  • One Chief of the Securities Fraud Unit (SDNY)
  • One Chief of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force (SDNY)
  • One Chief of the General Crimes Unit (SDNY)
  • One Chief of the Civil Frauds Unit (SDNY)
  • One Chief Appellate Attorney (SDNY)
  • One Deputy Chief of Appeals (SDNY)
  • One Regional Administrator for the New York office of the SEC
  • One Assistant Deputy Mayor for the City of New York
  • More than two-thirds of the firm’s partners have clerked for federal or state court judges

Accounting Fraud

We represent companies and individuals under investigation or accused of accounting fraud in cases involving breach of fiduciary duty; misuse or misdirection of funds; overstatements of revenues or the value of corporate assets; understatements of expenses or underreporting the existence of liabilities; tax evasion and tax fraud; accounting malpractice and or negligence; payroll fraud; and false estate and trust accounting. Our experience includes representing clients in internal investigations and government investigations in connection with civil and criminal accounting fraud issues and securities-related litigation.

Antitrust

We have represented individuals, corporations, and associations in all phases of criminal antitrust investigations, trials, and appeals involving claims of bid-rigging, price fixing, price discrimination, actual or alleged monopolization, market allocation, or other alleged antitrust violations. We routinely represent clients in connection with investigations by the Department of Justice, state attorneys general, and the Federal Trade Commission.

Business Fraud, Securities Fraud & Market Manipulation

Our lawyers have successfully handled a wide range of cases involving allegations of business or securities fraud, including insider trading, stock market manipulation, “pump and dump” schemes, fraudulent or negligent misrepresentations, and ponzi schemes. In particular, we have substantial experience in cases and investigations involving sophisticated financial products or market-related behavior, including claims involving equities, fixed income products, mortgage-backed securities, and CDOs. We also have the trial experience needed to defend a business fraud lawsuit.

Commodities Fraud

Morvillo Abramowitz lawyers represent institutional and individual clients in all aspects of commodities fraud investigations by federal and state regulators and prosecutors, including the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Department of Justice, state attorneys general, and local prosecutors, including the New York County District Attorney’s Office.

Defense Contractor Fraud and the False Claims Act

We defend private companies, federal contractors, and individuals involved in government and defense fraud investigations and lawsuits alleging fraud on the federal government. We have handled internal investigations and litigation arising out of the pricing and/or performance of government contracts, bid-rigging, and misrepresentation of qualifications, and have the ability to take “whistleblower” or other claims under the False Claims Act (FCA) to trial. Our experience spans a wide variety of industries, including defense, healthcare, pharmaceutical, information technology, energy, accounting firms, and educational institutions.

Export Controls

We provide assistance to clients in export and re-export controls, customs, economic sanctions law, and government contracts matters in multiple regulatory jurisdictions. We routinely handle cases involving all aspects of U.S. export controls, including programs intended to monitor and regulate the transfer of goods, technology, software, services, and information to foreign nationals and foreign destinations administered under the Commerce Department, the State Department, the Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and other economic sanctions regimes, as well as cases involving commercial firms and defense contractors under International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).

Our firm’s lawyers have served in government-appointed positions at the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security managing many of the Agency's largest export control settlements and indictments, including criminal investigations related to Chinese exports and the freight-forwarding industry, and as federal prosecutors working on cases involving terrorism, wire and mail fraud, economic espionage, and export control violations, among many other matters.

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

Morvillo Abramowitz is experienced in handling government inquiries, investigations, and enforcement actions for clients arising from alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

We routinely counsel individuals, U.S. companies and their foreign subsidiaries, and non-U.S. companies in government investigations involving allegations of corruption and bribery under the FCPA, the UK anti-bribery statute, anti-money laundering laws, and the Dodd-Frank Act’s whistleblower provisions.

Our experience also includes conducting internal investigations for companies with respect to potential FCPA violations and representing Boards and senior management in such investigations. We advise companies and senior officers on the administration of consent decrees, monitorships, and other post-settlement agreements, as well as local law issues, disciplinary and remedial measures, and voluntary disclosure to federal authorities, including the Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission. We also advise clients on FCPA compliance programs and due diligence issues.

Government Fraud

We represent clients facing allegations of defective pricing, false statements, or overbilling involving government contracts that have led the government to initiate either civil or criminal fraud proceedings. We have advised clients involved in bribery allegations, Federal False Claims Act lawsuits, and violations of export control laws. We have provided fraud defense services for government contractors in administrative hearings and suspension or debarment hearings.

Health Care Fraud

Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello PC represents companies, directors, officers, employees, physicians, and others in the health care industry who find themselves involved in criminal investigations, False Claims Act investigations, regulatory and enforcement proceedings, and civil litigation. Our lawyers understand the complex issues that exist within this ever-changing industry, and have defended clients against allegations of billing fraud, kickbacks, off-label promotion, misbranding, False Claims Act violations, and other claims involving health care fraud. We also have conducted significant internal investigations for health care providers, and have undertaken voluntary self-disclosures on behalf of health care professionals. We have the ability and experience to take all of these health care related matters to trial, if necessary.

Insider Trading

We often represent clients in investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), state attorneys general, and local prosecutors concerning allegations of insider trading.

Political Corruption

We have represented public officials, including elected officials, executive officers, law enforcement and public safety personnel, and other government figures accused of the misuse of governmental power for private benefit or personal gain. We have also represented public officials charged with misappropriation of public funds. Our lawyers have an in-depth understanding of the complex federal and state laws that govern claims of public corruption. In addition to defending our clients against criminal charges and/or civil claims, we frequently help manage the media coverage that frequently accompanies these types of accusations in order to protect the client’s public image and reputation. Recent successful representations have included those for a Congressman, state political officials, police officers, state and federal Judges, and the head of a self-regulatory organization

Tax Fraud

The firm has particular expertise representing individuals, corporations, and other business entities in federal and state criminal tax matters, including individuals and corporations with tax compliance issues and the professionals who advise such taxpayers. In recent years, we have represented targets, subjects, and witnesses in large-scale investigations conducted by the Department of Justice into tax shelters marketed by major accounting firms and financial institutions. We have also counseled numerous clients in connection with matters arising out of federal and state authorities’ pursuit of offshore bank accounts, and we have helped dozens of individuals bring themselves into compliance by disclosing accounts through the Internal Revenue Service's Voluntary Disclosure Practice and corresponding state voluntary disclosure programs.

Our criminal tax practice includes representing clients in administrative investigations conducted by the IRS, grand jury investigations conducted by the Department of Justice or state prosecutors, at trial, in sentencing proceedings, and on appeals. We also counsel clients confronting “egg shell” audits involving sensitive issues and the potential for a criminal investigation.