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U.S. Solicitor General Sees Pro-Business Tilt in Roberts Supreme Court
Craig L. Hymowitz, Blank Rome litigator, organized a Federalist Society event with U.S. Solicitor General Paul D. Clement in Philadelphia on July 18, 2007. This is the fourth consecutive year that Mr. Clement has addressed the Philadelphia chapter of the Federalist Society. Mr. Hymowitz said the event has drawn ever-larger audiences.

Mr. Clement is the U.S. government’s chief legal advocate before the Supreme Court. At 40, he is the youngest person to hold the post in over a century. “It is a chance to see one of the leading litigators in the nation,” Mr. Hymowitz said of Mr. Clement’s address. “There is no faster track for someone at his age in terms of what he has accomplished.”

In his speech, Mr. Clement said that the Supreme Court under Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., has taken a pronounced pro-business approach. He suggested that it could carry over into the next term. Like Chief Justice Roberts, Mr. Clement had been a member of the Federalist Society before joining government.

Mr. Clement said decisions limiting punitive-damage awards against corporate defendants and imposing restrictions on antitrust lawsuits suggested a distinct tilt in favor of business. He cited the May 21 decision in Bell Atlantic v. Twombly, in which the Court sided with the nation’s largest local telephone companies against consumers alleging that the firms had secretly agreed not to compete in one another’s territories.

07-18-2007

Haskell Slaughter’s Hart and Finch Named Charter Fellows of Litigation Counsel of America
J. Mark Hart and F. Lane Finch, Jr., attorneys with Haskell Slaughter Young & Rediker, LLC, have been honored as charter Fellows of the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA). LCA is a trial lawyer honorary society established to reflect the new face of the American bar. Membership in LCA is limited, representing less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers, and is by invitation only. The purposes of LCA are to recognize deserving, experienced, and highly qualified lawyers, to provide an additional outlet for scholarly authorship of legal articles on trial and litigation practice, to provide additional sources for professional development, to promote superior advocacy and ethical standards in the practice of law, and to assist in community involvement by its membership.

For more information about LCA, visit www.trialcounsel.org.

ABOUT J. MARK HART

Mark Hart's practice encompasses all areas of insurance litigation, including insurance coverage, products liability defense, punitive damages and class action defense, property and casualty defense, life and health claims defense, and directors' and officers' liability. In addition, he represents clients in business tort cases and other complex civil litigation. Mr. Hart also maintains an active appellate practice, including appeals in the United States Supreme Court. His client base includes major insurance carriers throughout the United States. Mr. Hart is a frequent lecturer and author on insurance law matters for various professional and industry groups, and he served from 1992 - 1996 as Amicus Curiae Chair of the Alabama Defense Lawyers Association. In 1978, he was Law Clerk to Chief Justice C.C. Torbert of the Alabama Supreme Court. Mr. Hart is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Insurance Law and is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America.

ABOUT F. LANE FINCH, JR.

Lane Finch maintains a diversified civil litigation practice, with a particular focus on representing businesses in commercial litigation, insurance coverage issues, directors' and officers' liability, employment matters and intellectual property protection. He also maintains an active practice advising clients on issues relating to doing business in China. Mr. Finch is an adjunct professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham's School of Business and served in 2006 as a visiting professor at Anshan Normal University in Anshan, Liaoning province, China, teaching American Business Law and Intellectual Property Rights. Active in bar association and professional education matters, Mr. Finch currently serves as Co-Chair of the Directors and Officers Subcommittee and Co-Chair of the Programming Subcommittee of the Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association's Section of Litigation. He is a frequent speaker and author on litigation, insurance coverage and intellectual property topics, as well as on doing business in China. Mr. Finch was recognized in the Birmingham Business Journal's 2006 "Best of the Bar" poll for workers' compensation law and is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America.

07-18-2007

Four Goldberg Kohn Lawyers Receive 2007 Trial Lawyer of the Year Award
Principals Frederick H. Cohen and David J. Chizewer and associates Chad A. Blumenfield and Ann H. Chen received the 2007 Trial Lawyer of the Year Award from Public Justice Foundation (formerly the Trial Lawyers for Public Justice Foundation) for obtaining a record-breaking verdict against Amerigroup Corporation and its Illinois health plan for Amerigroup's defrauding the Medicaid program by discriminating against people on Medicaid based on their health status. Samuel B. Cole and Michele M. Fox of the United States Attorney's Office in Chicago and Paul Gaynor, David J. Adams and Anne R.K. Reader of the Illinois Attorney General's Office also received the award.

In United States ex rel. Tyson v. Amerigroup, Case No. 02 C 6074, the Goldberg Kohn litigation team obtained the largest jury verdict ($48 million) in the 150?year history of the False Claims Act by proving that Amerigroup had submitted 18,130 false claims to the federal and state governments. After the jury trial, Judge Harry D. Leinenweber added penalties and treble damages to the jury verdict, which increased the total award to the state of Illinois and the federal government to $334 million.

The Public Justice Foundation also named lawyers who worked on seven other cases as finalists for its 2007 Trial Lawyer of the Year Award. This nationally prestigious award is bestowed annually upon the trial lawyer or lawyers who have made the greatest contribution to the public interest by trying or settling a precedent-setting case. The winners were announced on July 17, 2007 in Chicago.

07-18-2007

Jayne P. Bultena Joins Foley Hoag as a Partner in the Government Strategies Practice
Foley Hoag LLP announced today the addition of Jayne P. Bultena as a partner in the Government Strategies Practice. Jayne will work with life sciences companies on Food and Drug Administration (FDA) matters. She is based in the firm's Washington office.

Jayne joins Foley Hoag most recently from Hogan & Hartson, where she represented food and drug industry clients on a wide range of regulatory and legislative matters, including those involving the FDA. Her practice emphasizes products in the biotech, pharmaceutical and consumer health care sectors. She routinely counsels clients on the development of claims, labeling, and promotional materials for prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, dietary supplements, conventional and functional foods, and cosmetics.

"We are excited to bring Jayne on board to complement our existing government strategies team," said Nick Littlefield, Chair of the Government Strategies Practice. "Her background and extensive experience practicing before the FDA and similar agencies will add a valuable component to the services we offer to our clients in the life sciences industry."

Jayne's practice also involves creating marketing plans addressing policy and regulatory concerns, preparing clients for advisory committee presentations, and conducting internal compliance audits and training. She has notable experience managing compliance crises and promotional violations, including FDA inspections, responding to deficiency and warning letters, conducting recalls, and coordinating media relations connected to compliance issues.

In addition to her extensive experience with FDA issues, Jayne represents clients before other agencies that regulate the sale of consumer products, including the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Of note, she has significant experience with the application of FTC's advertising standards to OTC drugs, cosmetics and dietary supplements, as well as the CPSC's packaging requirements for drug and consumer health care products.

Jayne earned her B.S. from the University of South Dakota, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

07-18-2007

Stern Authors Column on Appointment of U.S. Marshals
Bingham partner Donald Stern authored an op-ed column on the appointment of individuals to become U.S. Marshals. The U.S. Marshal's Service plays an important role in federal law enforcement. It protects the federal courthouses and personnel (including federal judges and prosecutors), runs the witness protection program, tracks down fugitives, seizes forfeited assets and transports prisoners. These duties have become even more critical in this post-Sept. 11 era, particularly in Boston with the federal courthouse located prominently on the waterfront. Stern, who served as U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, notes that the process by which the U.S. marshal is appointed is one that sometimes does not work. The local heads of the marshal's offices are selected by the president (and confirmed by the Senate), as opposed to being chosen by a professional appointment process. In the past, this has resulted in the appointment of those not qualified for the position (Stern referenced the previous Massachusetts appointee, who was dismissed after a Justice Department investigation found that he failed to work full time). Congress has been making an effort to change the qualifications that will apply to the appointment of U.S. marshals, but both Massachusetts Senators are opposing the nomination of the president's current nominee for the position. Stern suggests that a healthy debate about the U.S. marshal’s position and what type of background is most suitable for someone in that role should be seen as pushing things in a nonpolitical direction.

07-18-2007

Covington Secures Relief for Florida Death Row Inmate
In a unanimous decision issued on July 12th, the Florida Supreme Court vacated the convictions and death sentence of Merrit Alonzo Sims, holding that his trial counsel’s failure to object to certain prejudicial evidence at trial constituted ineffective assistance of counsel under the Sixth Amendment. This decision caps nearly ten years of work on Mr. Sims’ behalf by Covington & Burling LLP, which has represented him pro bono throughout post-conviction proceedings in the Florida state courts.

In 1994, Mr. Sims was convicted and sentenced to death for the 1991 shooting death of a Miami Springs police officer, who pulled Sims over on an erroneous report that the car he was driving had been stolen. Although he admitted shooting the officer with the officer’s own gun, Mr. Sims testified that he acted in self defense after the officer choked him, uttered racial slurs and threatened to kill him.

The prosecution attempted to establish a motive for the homicide by arguing that Sims had drugs in the car at the time and had killed the officer to avoid being caught violating his parole. But the only evidence offered to support their theory was the testimony of a police drug-detection dog handler, who said his dog had alerted to the front seat of the car during a search conducted more than two days after the shooting occurred. No drugs were found.

In granting relief, the Court stated that the State’s case was based upon this motive theory, and that trial counsel’s failure to object to the dog-alert evidence “did not represent a strategic choice.” Because Mr. Sims was prejudiced by this failure, the Court concluded, he was entitled to a new trial.

Numerous Covington lawyers contributed to this case over the past ten years, with partner P. Benjamin Duke taking the lead since 2000. Among those providing assistance at various stages were associates Joshua Doan, Kimberly Zelnick, Philip Irwin and Jonathan Slonim.

07-18-2007

White & Case Grows Competition Practice in Paris with New Partner Arrival
Jean-Paul Tran Thiet, one of France's most respected competition lawyers, is joining White & Case as client demand for competition law expertise continues to increase. Tran Thiet, who is due to arrive at White & Case at the end of the summer, will co-head White & Case's Paris-based Competition Practice in conjunction with Jean-Patrice de La Laurencie. Including the new arrival, the practice will number two partners and eight associates.

"Joining White & Case is a real opportunity for me to continue to practise in a first-rate competition practice, while becoming part of one of the world's largest international networks," said Jean-Paul Tran Thiet.

Tran Thiet, 56, has a degree in public administration and is also a graduate of the Political Sciences Institute of Grenoble. A former senior French civil servant, Tran Thiet was, from 1977 to 1990: deputy and then head of sector of the S.G.C.I. (which is now the S.G.A.E. — General secretariat of European Affairs); a member of the cabinet of the Vice-President of the European Commission; a technical adviser, and then deputy director in the cabinet of the Ministry of European Affairs. Thereafter he was adviser to the French Prime Minister from 1991 to 1992.

A practising lawyer since 1992, Jean-Paul Tran Thiet founded Juris Defi, a law firm in Paris, which integrated into the Arthur Andersen group in 1994. In 1997, Tran Thiet joined Bureau Francis Lefebvre as a partner and co-head of its department specialising in European, competition and market liberalisation and deregulation law.

In 2001 he was appointed Chairman of the European Affairs working group of the Montaigne Institute, one of France's most prominent think tanks, and was elected a member of its Board of Directors in March 2006.

"Jean-Paul's experience and knowledge of European matters and regulated industries will be of great benefit to our clients and further enhances what we can offer," added partner and practice co-head Jean-Patrice de La Laurencie.

White & Case's Global Competition Practice numbers 140 lawyers, including 35 partners, based in offices around the world. The group advises on high profile takeover issues and both contentious and non-contentious competition law matters, including Microsoft's ongoing dispute with the European Commission. White & Case currently has 115 lawyers in Paris, including 29 partners.

07-18-2007

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