Antitrust, White Collar Defense and Counseling
BartkoZankel is positioned by lengthy experience to lead in resolving and avoiding problems arising as a consequence of heightened governmental scrutiny of business practices. We have experience handling high stakes, bet-the-company disputes and have proven results. Our business litigation group partners work with individual executives and international companies to solve business problems in the modern global economy. We are expert at navigating the relationship between foreign and United States civil and criminal laws. That experience enables the firm to adeptly plan and manage internal investigations and complex litigation, and deal effectively with governmental regulators and prosecutors. The firm’s experience in both prosecuting and defending these cases has given it valuable insights which many firms lack.
United States v. Swanson. United States District Court for the Northern District of California. We successfully defended our client in a criminal antitrust price-fixing case involving the dynamic random access memory (DRAM) industry after a month-long jury trial. All of the other corporate and individual defendants pled guilty, and the government focused its formidable resources on convicting our client. The case was closely watched by the legal community, and after days of deliberation, the jury announced that it was hung 10-2 in favor of acquittal. The Department of Justice dismissed the case. Our success was due in large part to our ability to establish and master a multi-million document database gathered by the Grand Jury during a lengthy international investigation and cull key information from it.
Advanced Microtherm v. Norman Wright Mechanical Corporation. United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Defending vendor of HVAC equipment in large 8-year old antitrust, monopolization and conspiracy case related to University of California and City of San Francisco investigations into alleged market manipulation in large California public engineering projects. The case was tried to jury verdict in 2010 following an 8-week trial where plaintiffs requested $34 million in damages before trebling and attorney’s fees. Jury was out 3 hours and came back with a total defense verdict.
Grafton Partners v. PricewaterhouseCoopers. (also known as the PinnFund litigation) Alameda County Superior Court. We successfully represented a class of investors victimized by a Ponzi scheme. Working with the SEC, its receiver, and a bankruptcy trustee, we crafted strategies to investigate and pursue the promoters and third (deep pocket) parties that enabled the scheme. As a result of the information the firm uncovered, the promoters were indicted and successfully prosecuted. In addition, we recovered in excess of $100 million in settlements for the class from a major California bank, an international accounting firm, and several law firms after several years of hard-fought litigation. The case was also the subject of several Court of Appeal opinions and a California Supreme Court opinion. The representation is ongoing as we finalize the collection of assets.
Goldfields Limited v. Harmony Gold Mining Company, Ltd. United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. We provided strategic advice to a South African mining company in connection with a highly publicized hostile takeover bid that was litigated on three continents. The engagement required analyzing prior negotiations, the market segment and a deep understanding of Russian oligarchs to develop an appropriate strategy.
United States of America v. Pfizer, Inc. United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Defense counsel in criminal price-fixing case relating to sodium gluconate, an organic chemical used as an industrial cleaning agent. Case ended with plea bargain.
SEC Investigation of Software Revenue Recognition. We represented the CFO, General Counsel and two former employees in the course of an internal investigation and SEC investigation.
Antitrust Investigations. We regularly represent executives and companies in antitrust investigations. We recently successfully represented a Japanese executive who had been carved out of the government settlement of the company he had worked with for many years.
Environmental Investigations. We regularly represent companies and executives in criminal and regulatory investigations.