White Collar & Internal Investigations
Our lawyers represent individual and corporate clients faced with the increased use of criminal and regulatory enforcement to address business practices. Judge Holwell brings to bear his judicial experience in high-profile criminal cases as well as his substantial prior experience in private practice. HSG also benefits from the experience of Justice McGuire, who spent many years at the Manhattan District Attorney's office (including as deputy chief of appeals and as senior counsel to the Rackets Bureau) and who served as an appellate and trial-level judge in New York. As a firm, we have the experience and the judgment to conduct internal investigations on behalf of corporations, financial institutions or their boards, and to represent and advise independent and special committees when faced with sensitive matters, whether in response to a shareholder demand or a regulatory or prosecutorial inquiry. The firm and its lawyers have and can also serve as an independent monitor or consultant, pursuant to settlement agreements, consent decrees, or similar arrangements.
- Judge Holwell, with the assistance of HSG, is currently acting as an independent monitor engaged by a large financial institution pursuant to an agreement between the institution and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
- HSG was retained to represent Promontory Financial Group in connection with an investigation by the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) over Promontory’s work for Standard Chartered. After DFS imposed an order that would have indefinitely barred Promontory’s access to bank information for institutions superintended by the DFS—eliminating Promontory’s ability to serve as a consultant to the world’s largest banks—HSG, having recently joined the matter as co-counsel, negotiated a settlement under which Promontory agreed not to take on certain new consulting arrangements in New York for just six months, while paying a modest fine and without admitting any liability.
- While in private practice prior to joining the bench, Judge Holwell, assisted by Michael Shuster, represented Credit Lyonnais, MGM/United Artists, and the Government of France in two major United States grand jury investigations, a Federal Reserve Board investigation, and criminal suits in France and Italy, all relating to the Bank’s financing of the acquisition of the MGM/UA film studio from Kirk Kerkorian as well as the Bank's investment in the Executive Life Insurance Company.
- Our lawyers conducted an internal investigation for a European bank facing potential Federal Reserve Board action, as well as potential criminal prosecution, as a result of rogue trading in its New York branch in interest rate swaps, CMOs, currency swaps, and various other financial instruments.
- Prior to joining the bench, Judge Holwell represented Holly Sugar Corporation and MacMillan Bloedel, Ltd., a major steel producer and a major aluminum manufacturer, in connection with criminal grand jury investigations of price fixing in, respectively, the sugar, paper, titanium, and aluminum industries. In two of the cases he represented the client in subsequent plea negotiations and parallel treble damage class actions.
- Our lawyers conducted an internal investigation for a European bank facing civil liability and potential criminal prosecution resulting from manipulation of global currency markets.
- While on the bench, Judge Holwell presided over numerous white collar cases involving insider trading, Ponzi schemes, market manipulations, mortgage frauds, foreign corrupt practices, and cross-border business frauds.