Christopher chairs the firm’s white collar and regulatory defense group. He is an experienced trial lawyer with nearly 25 years of experience litigating both criminal and civil matters. Chris has handled cases in the areas of securities fraud, unfair competition, trade secret theft, public corruption, FCPA, tax fraud, insider trading, stock option backdating, mail and wire fraud, antitrust and money laundering, among others. He has represented audit committees and companies while leading internal investigations in cases involving accounting fraud, bribery, embezzlement, kick-backs, tax compliance, export compliance, and health and safety issues, among others. Chris also frequently represents companies and individuals before the DOJ, SEC and other regulatory agencies.

Before joining Fenwick, Chris served as a federal prosecutor in San Francisco for six years and prosecuted a wide variety of white collar crimes. He was a member of the Securities Fraud Section and one of the founding members of the Northern District’s Stock Options Backdating Task Force. Chris worked closely with the SEC in San Francisco, Washington, D.C. and elsewhere while conducting corporate fraud investigations. During his tenure as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Chris represented the United States in numerous jury trials, evidentiary hearings and appeals before the Ninth Circuit. He was lead counsel in several stock option backdating investigations involving Silicon Valley companies, investigations of technology companies for revenue recognition fraud and other corporate fraud investigations.

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  • Recent Representative Experience

    Regulatory Representations

    • Internal investigations and related DOJ and SEC investigations on behalf of several multinational corporations into bribery and kick-back allegations in jurisdictions throughout the world, including China, India, Mexico, Nigeria, and Russia
    • Internal investigations for several companies and boards into allegations relating to accounting and financial improprieties
    • DOJ investigation into whistle-blower allegations of accounting fraud on behalf of technology company
    • Internal investigation for airline into whistle-blower allegations regarding safety and FAA regulatory compliance
    • FTC investigation into privacy issues on behalf of social networking company
    • DOJ tax fraud investigation on behalf of multinational company

    Litigation Representations

    • Securities class action litigation for life sciences and technology companies
    • Insider trading case filed by the SEC against several alleged members of an insider trading ring
    • Business and Professions Code § 17200 litigation brought by the State of California against financial services company, as well as related class action litigation
    • Theft of trade secrets litigation for technology companies

    Individual Representations

    • CEOs, CFOs, and other executives in DOJ and SEC investigations relating to accounting fraud and stock option backdating, as well as related shareholder and derivative litigation
    • Several individuals in insider trading investigations by the DOJ and SEC
    • Hedge fund manager in fraud investigation by the DOJ
    • Board members in DOJ and SEC investigations of conduct by management
    • Employees of multi-national company in DOJ and SEC investigation into alleged accounting fraud and FCPA violations
    • Individuals in UBS tax fraud investigation
  • Judicial Clerkships
    • Honorable James R. Browning, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
    • Honorable Harry L. Hupp, United States District Court for the Central District of California
  • Professional Activities
    • Chair, Securities Litigation Section, Bar Association of San Francisco
    • Executive Committee, Northern District of California Chapter, Federal Bar Association
  • Selected Publications
  • Selected Media References
    • Madoff Behind Bars, but Probe Grinds Forward, Associated Press, July 1, 2009
    • Peter John Schuller, Is Madoff the Tip of the Iceberg?, KQED Radio, June 30, 2009
    • Tough Post-Enron Regulations No Match for Satyam CEO, Investor's Business Daily, January 8, 2009
    • Thomas Bron, Greasy Palms: When bribery investigations become public, expect follow-on civil suits, California Lawyer, September 2008
    • Mid-year Report on Insider-Trading Enforcement, Compliance Week, July 25, 2008

Education & Admissions

J.D., magna cum laude, Harvard Law School

B.A., summa cum laude, English
Dartmouth College

Admitted to practice in California and New York

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