Sullivan & Cromwell’s Criminal Defense and Investigations Group (CDIG) is widely recognized as one of the preeminent white-collar criminal defense practices in the United States. S&C ranked in the top tier of all law firms for its New York White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations practice in each of the last three editions of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. In the premier 2010 edition of U.S. News & World Report - Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms,” S&C also received a Tier 1 ranking, the top honor, for our New York Criminal Defense: White Collar practice. In addition, Euromoney’s Benchmark: America’s Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys has recognized the Firm’s work in this practice area in each of its last four editions.
The Firm’s CDIG practice is varied and deep. We represent individuals and institutions around the world in the most significant white-collar criminal defense matters, regulatory enforcement matters and internal investigations. We respond to matters handled by virtually every enforcement agency, including the Department of Justice, the SEC, the CFTC, federal and state banking regulatory agencies, FINRA and other self-regulatory enforcement agencies, and Attorneys General, District Attorneys and regulatory agencies in numerous states. We have developed particular expertise in handling cross-border enforcement investigations for clients worldwide.
Our criminal defense and investigations lawyers continue to play a leading role in many of the major enforcement investigations or proceedings involving prominent individuals and corporations. The Group’s lawyers represent clients in investigations involving:
- the subprime market decline
- economic sanctions and anti-money laundering compliance
- stock options backdating
- healthcare fraud
- commodities market manipulation
- insider trading
- Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations.
Our investigations are increasingly multinational in scope, involving numerous regulators and prosecutors in jurisdictions around the globe. Our success is confirmed by the fact that most of these matters remain non-public.
S&C’s criminal defense team includes nine former federal and state prosecutors, former bank regulatory enforcement counsel, and the leading practitioners in banking and securities regulation. Our CDIG lawyers have been regularly recognized as leading members of the criminal defense bar in peer and industry rankings and surveys. Members of the Group also have extensive trial experience, having collectively handled more than 115 criminal trials in federal and state courts.
Notable recent public representations handled by our criminal defense and investigations lawyers include:
- BP plc in the settlement of U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) investigations of alleged commodities manipulation, including entering into a deferred prosecution agreement with the DOJ and a consent order with the CFTC.
- Diageo, in the successful negotiation of an industry-wide settlement agreement, resolving an industry-wide investigation by the Attorney General of the State of New York into spirits and wine pricing, promotion and other sales practices in New York State.
- Thomas Weisel Partners in regulatory investigations by the SEC, FINRA (formerly NASD), NYSE and the California Department of Corporations on behalf of all 50 states regarding research reports of its analysts and possible conflicts of interest.
- Statoil in connection with its compliance with the deferred prosecution agreement entered into at the time of settlement.
- British Airways in global criminal antitrust investigations of price-fixing of fuel surcharges with respect to cargo and passenger air services.
- The New York City Council in an investigation by the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York of budget practices.