Because of the highly sensitive, often confidential nature of his practice, many of David’s greatest successes are never publicly reported. David’s focus, whenever possible, is on strategic, early efforts to persuade government and regulatory authorities not to file any charges at all against his clients. He has successfully headed off potential enforcement actions against business leaders in a broad range of industries, including all varieties of financial services (securities and commodities trading and sales, banking, investment entities, and hedge funds), automobile manufacturing and sales, professional sports agency, pharmaceuticals and high technology. Areas of his focus, both inside and out of government, have included securities and bank fraud, tax and insurance fraud, cybercrime, data security, international anti-corruption law (including FCPA), along with Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), anti-money laundering (AML) compliance, and defense of obstruction of justice allegations.
When charges are filed, David has achieved extraordinary results for his clients. He has obtained not one but two federal court rulings suppressing the fruits of search warrants in indicted white-collar cases. And in 2019, David defeated an attempt by a professional sports union to end his client’s 30-year career as a player agent, clearing his client after an evidentiary hearing before a union arbitrator.
David is perhaps best known for his widely-reported victory in defense of high-profile private equity financier Benjamin Wey against federal criminal and civil securities fraud and money laundering charges. The Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission both voluntarily dismissed their cases against Mr. Wey in 2017 after David persuaded the trial court that the FBI had violated Mr. Wey’s Fourth Amendment constitutional rights when executing search warrants at his company’s office and his home, resulting in the suppression of all the evidence obtained from those warrants.
Then, in September 2019, for another client whose business was searched by federal warrant in a completely separate federal criminal BSA and tax investigation, David succeeded in obtaining a suppression order excluding all evidence obtained from that warrant.
David has handled numerous evidentiary hearings and federal and state appellate arguments in criminal and civil matters, both in and out of government. His courtroom successes include a 2016 trial victory in federal court in Arizona for his client, Marvel Entertainment, in which he defeated a claim that Marvel stole a patent holder’s design for a well-known Spider-Man role-play web-shooting toy.
David frequently writes and speaks on Fourth and Fifth Amendment issues in white collar matters, as well as the attorney-client privilege in the context of corporate and criminal investigations. He has been a featured speaker at the annual national meeting of the Association of Corporate Counsel (2019), the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (2018 Spring Meeting), and the New York Council of Defense Lawyers’ annual retreat (2018). He is frequently quoted in the media as an expert in federal criminal procedure and securities matters.
David has been recognized by New York Super Lawyers in Criminal Defense: White Collar from 2011-2019. He has also been recognized in Best Lawyers in America: Commercial Litigation and Criminal Defense: White-Collar (2013-2020).
Between 1999 and 2009, David served as an Assistant US Attorney in the criminal division of the Southern District of New York, serving as a lead prosecutor on numerous complex white collar investigations and prosecutions, federal criminal jury trials, and Second Circuit appeals. As a member of that office's Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force between 2005 and 2009, David investigated and prosecuted a wide variety of securities industry-related matters, including accounting fraud schemes, market manipulation, insider trading, and investment adviser fraud. Between 2002 and 2005, as a member of that office's Major Crimes Unit and a Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property (CHIPs) prosecutor, David handled complex fraud prosecutions involving computer technology attacks, data security, and intellectual property theft, as well as crimes involving corporate insurance, bank, tax, and investment fraud.
During law school, David was a notes editor on the Stanford Law Review.
- Stanford University (JD, with distinction)
- Cornell University (BA, with distinction)
Complex Business Litigation
- Secured a summary judgment dismissal of a federal business tort case that sought $30 million in damages against the chief operating officer of a multinational financial conglomerate; also prevailed on a rare motion to access the plaintiff’s attorney-client communications based on the "offensive use" doctrine.
- Defeated a multimillion-dollar breach of contract claim in a federal jury trial against Marvel Entertainment involving royalties for the Spider-Man Web Blaster role-play toy.
- Represented several real estate loan securitization and servicing companies in a $100 million breach of contract case in a New York federal court.
- Secured dismissal of multimillion-dollar fraud and contract cases filed by investors against an international oil and gas mogul in the Commercial Division of the New York Supreme Court.
- Obtained a preliminary injunction for Krispy Kreme Doughnuts in a New York federal case against a franchisee involving Lanham Act trademark and trade secret claims.
- Represented a professional basketball player agent against decertification proceedings initiated by player's union in context of collective bargaining.
Enforcement Actions & Investigations
- Represented the chief operating officer and director of several foreign financial services companies in a DOJ Tax Division corporate tax fraud probe.
- Represented a professional basketball player agent in connection with allegations of NCAA rules violations and related assertions of federal mail and wire fraud.
- Counseled an investment advisory firm in a SEC "pay to play" investigation.
- Represented an international food company’s general counsel in a federal grand jury investigation.
- Counseled an advisor at a Fortune 100 financial institution in a DOJ insider trading investigation.
- Represented a US bank’s chief anti-money laundering officer in a criminal investigation of alleged anti-money laundering and Bank Secrecy Act violations.
- Counseled an international market consulting firm CEO and founder in a federal market manipulation and money laundering case.
- Advised employees of major international financial institutions amid multiple DOJ, CFTC, and foreign regulator investigations into alleged trading improprieties and anti-competitive actions; and in residential mortgage-backed security (RMBS) investigations by the DOJ, the SEC, and state regulatory authorities.
- Represented parties in FCPA investigations, including numerous financial institution employees in a matter that also involved commercial bribery allegations; a former investment banking division chief of a major financial institution; and a founder and CEO of an international oil and gas company in a matter involving alleged indirect payments to a financial institution director.
- Represented a company and individuals in an investigation that involved allegations of trade secret theft and misappropriation of a business rival’s data.
- Advised an automobile manufacturing executive amid a DOJ investigation and civil litigation regarding National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issues.
- Counseled an offshore trading subsidiary executive of a Wall Street financial institution during DOJ and SEC investigations into alleged trading improprieties.
- Advised an internet technology executive facing a Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) investigation.
- Represented current and former financial institution traders and trading executives, including in a FINRA matter targeting complex financial instrument trading practices and in SEC and FINRA probes into market access regulations.
- Counseled a Big Four accounting firm executive in an international Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) obstruction and accounting fraud investigation.
- Represented a hedge fund analyst amid a criminal investigation into alleged insider trading involving a so-called “expert network.”
- Counseled a foreign corporation regarding a federal grand jury investigation into a Bitcoin exchange.
- Advised a cash handling and processing company on legal issues related to commercial marijuana distribution.
Recognition & Awards
- National Law Journal: Criminal Law Trailblazer (2020)
- Forbes: “…one of the top white collar attorneys in the country…” Federal Judge Rules FBI Agents Conducted Illegal Search of Business, by Walter Pavlo (2019)
- Best Lawyers in America: Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense: White-Collar (2013-2021)
- New York Super Lawyers: Criminal Defense: White Collar (2011-2020)