Friday, March 02, 2012

ABA White Collar Conference

Lots of "white collar" criminal defense lawyers and prosecutors were in town this week at the Eden Roc for the big ABA White Collar Conference.  The conference is different than others I have been to because many of the speakers are current and former prosecutors speaking of the virtues of cooperation and pleading.  It's a much different atmosphere than the NACDL conferences that I've been to. That said, it isn't all bad and there are lots of interesting and smart people in town. 

I didn't see many of the lawyers who had won big white collar cases on the agenda.  For example, it's pretty amazing to me that Michael Caruso wasn't invited to speak when he won the biggest securities fraud trial of the year...

In other very sad news, Rumpole and SFL covered the passing of Judge Maxine Cohen Lando, who I really liked a lot.  Her funeral is today.  RIP.


Bob Becerra said...

This ABA conference I find is really geared toward lawyers who represent corporations in criminal investigations who self report, cooperate and then give up their scapegoat executives to the government. A really great conference though, because the people who attend are very interesting, and the materials that come with the conference are usually first rate.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I would have to second what Bob said.

This is not the kind of conference where you'd want to hear from a lawyer like Caruso. He'd be more suited for a conference aimed at teaching criminal defense lawyers how to win trials.

Anonymous said...

agree with the above comments. the ABA White collar folks are a tight click of mostly former AUSAs and doj folks whose primary practice is pleading clients guilty. there was one female attorney who gave a presentation on the "virtues" of cooperation. a little overstated. it was amazing they had an FCPA panel with chuck duross but none of the trial lawyers who trounced the government in the lindsay case, the oshea case, and the africa sting case - all fcpa loses. and most of those trial laweyrs were in town and presumably would have enjooyed serving on the panel. that would have made teh the fcpa presentation a more honest and balanced and probably engaging session

and caruso rocks

Anonymous said...

Come on Markus you have represented people who pled guilty and cooperated, dont act so holier than thou

Anonymous said...

If you're going to do a good job for your clients, you're probably going to have to represent a cooperator on occasion. What you don't have to do is flip all your clients as your default position. Some lawyers, all they do is represent snitches. We all know who they are. When is the last time you heard of one of them taking a case to trial? David doesn't need me to defend him, but at the risk of stating the obvious: David tries cases.

The frustrating thing about some of these "trial" conferences is that, given the chance, all anyone wants to do is bitch about how they haven't been offered good pleas, and how can they get a better plea, and why didn't the government recommend a bigger percent off for my snitch.

Its getting out of control. A prosecutor told me last week, in so many words, that if I waited to get the discovery and review it before scheduling a debriefing, one of the co-defendants' lawyers was going to win the cooperation "race." It's outrageous.