News Feed https://jenner.com/library News Description https://jenner.com/library Firm’s Amicus Brief in Michigan Criminal Case Receives Much Media Attention <p> An <u>amicus brief</u> filed by the firm in a criminal case on appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court has received a great deal of media attention in connection with the case’s oral argument on April 6, 2016.&nbsp; The case, <em>People of the State of Michigan v. Lorinda Swain</em>, involves a woman who was convicted in 2002 of the sexual abuse of her adopted son, who was 14 years old when he made the accusation.&nbsp; Ms. Swain served more than seven years of a 25- to 50-year sentence in prison before her son, as an adult, recanted his story.&nbsp; After a confirming polygraph and corroborating testimony, the original trial judge granted her motion for relief from judgment and set aside her four convictions.&nbsp;</p> <p> Since then the Michigan Court of Appeals has twice reversed her efforts to obtain a new trial.&nbsp; The case is finally before Michigan’s highest court which, in granting leave to appeal, requested briefing on the possible legal pathways and corresponding standards for relief that should apply to claims of actual innocence within the State of Michigan.</p> <p> The firm filed the amicus brief on behalf of nine current and former Michigan prosecutors, including one who previously prosecuted the case.&nbsp; Submitted at the request of the court, the brief examines the question, under Michigan law, what are the standards that must be met by a defendant alleging wrongful conviction to be granted a new trial?&nbsp; The brief, which was referenced by Ms. Swain’s attorney during the rebuttal portion of his argument, argues for a broad reading of Michigan’s statute and court rules to provide relief from convictions where there is substantial evidence that a person is actually innocent and discusses policy implications surrounding the interpretation of the law.</p> <p> The team that authored the brief was led by Associate <a href="https://jenner.com/people/ChadRay">Chad J. Ray</a>, who was supervised and guided by Partners <a href="https://jenner.com/people/SaraHorton">Sara Tonnies Horton</a> and <a href="https://jenner.com/people/PaulMargolis">Paul D. Margolis</a>.</p> <p> News of the case and the amicus brief was reported by <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/what-does-innocent-person-have-do-get-their-conviction-overturned#stream/0">NPR</a>, <a href="http://www.detroitnews.com/story/opinion/editorials/2016/04/03/editorial-free-lorinda-swain-now/82587218/"><em>The Detroit News</em></a>, <a href="http://wincountry.com/news/articles/2016/apr/05/lorinda-swain-gets-backing-before-michigan-supreme-court-hearing/">WIN 98.5</a> and <a href="http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/4/8/1512573/-Michigan-Supreme-Court-case-has-massive-implications-for-the-wrongfully-convicted"><em>The Daily Kos.</em></a>&nbsp; The <a href="http://innocencenetwork.org/michigan-state-supreme-court-to-hear-michigan-innocence-clinics-client-lorinda-swains-appeal/">Innocence Network</a> website and the <a href="http://www.battlecreekenquirer.com/story/news/local/2016/04/06/state-supreme-court-hears-lorinda-swain-appeal/82712014/"><em>Battle Creek Enquirer</em></a> also carried news of Ms. Swain’s appeal.&nbsp; For more information about the case, including additional briefs that were filed and an audio recording of the oral arguments in the Michigan Supreme Court, please click <a href="http://courts.mi.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/oral-arguments/2015-2016/Pages/150994.aspx">here</a>.</p> 25 Apr 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15101 https://jenner.com/library Partners Jason Osborn and Melissa Root Selected as “Emerging Leaders” by <i>The M&A Advisor</i> <p> Jenner &amp; Block Partners <a href="https://jenner.com/people/JasonOsborn">Jason D. Osborn</a> and <a href="https://jenner.com/people/MelissaRoot">Melissa M. Root</a> have been selected as “Emerging Leaders” in the legal advisor category by <em>The M&amp;A Advisor</em>.&nbsp; They will be honored at a black-tie awards gala in New York on June 10, 2016.&nbsp; The 2016&nbsp; winners were chosen from a pool of prominent nominees for their notable accomplishments in business and in service to the community.&nbsp;</p> <p> “The Annual <em>M&amp;A Advisor </em>Emerging Leaders Awards was born as the 40 Under 40 Awards in the United States in 2010 to recognize and celebrate the achievements of young M&amp;A, financing and turnaround professionals who had reached a significant level of success and made a notable contribution to their industry and community. With the expansion of the Emerging Leaders program to the United Kingdom, and Europe earlier this year, the 2016 US award winners join a truly global network of young leaders,” said David Fergusson, president and co-CEO of <em>The M&amp;A Advisor</em>.</p> <p> Mr. Osborn is a member of the firm’s Private Equity and Mergers and Acquisitions Practices and leads the firm’s Corporate Innovation Task Force.&nbsp; He counsels clients on their business development strategies and regularly represents private equity funds and public and private company clients in complex transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, going-private transactions, joint ventures, divestures, private financings, recapitalizations and restructurings, and in related corporate governance, executive compensation and general corporate matters.</p> <p> Ms. Root is a member of the firm’s Restructuring and Bankruptcy, Bankruptcy Litigation and ERISA Litigation practices.&nbsp; She is a bankruptcy lawyerexperienced in sizeable bankruptcy cases.&nbsp; She frequently represents parties in large complex bankruptcy litigation matters and also frequently represents debtors and trustees in Chapter 11 cases.</p> 28 Apr 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15126 https://jenner.com/library Partner Neil Barofsky Discusses Treasury’s Proposed Identification Requirement with Bloomberg <p> Jenner &amp; Block Partner <a href="https://jenner.com/people/NeilBarofsky">Neil M. Barofsky</a> wrote an editorial for and was interviewed by Bloomberg regarding the US Treasury Department’s proposed identification requirement that would require banks to gather basic information about the owners of new bank accounts held by shell companies.&nbsp;</p> <p> Titled “<a href="https://jenner.com/system/assets/assets/9423/original/Bloomberg_20Neil_20Barofsky_20April_2026_202016.pdf">US Treasury Takes a Stand for Transparency</a>,” Mr. Barofsky’s editorial in <em>Bloomberg View</em> argues that the reform makes sense and already is required in sophisticated financial centers throughout the world.&nbsp; Mr. Barofsky observes that the proposed rule would be good for everyone, including the banks it intends to regulate.&nbsp; “Compliance with the rule will help support regulatory efforts to better shape the culture of US banks, by forcing them to take responsibility for truly knowing their customers.&nbsp; More importantly, when you balance the benefits of more effective policing of criminal activities with the costs of an additional compliance burden, the trade-off seems modest,” he writes.</p> <p> In a segment on “<a href="http://www.executiveinterviews.com/delivery/v1/mini/default.asp?CI=N&amp;order=U16790US">Bloomberg Surveillance</a>,” Mr. Barofsky says that the reform is a “good step, and it’s encouraging that Treasury is moving on it.”</p> <p> Finally, “Bloomberg Surveillance” also spoke with Mr. Barofsky about his tenure as the first special inspector general of the historic US$700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program from 2008-2011.&nbsp;&nbsp; He calls the role one highlight of his career and observes that “we’re probably safer than we were in 2008.”</p> 25 Apr 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15131 https://jenner.com/library Partners Andrew Bart and Richard Stone Named 2016 “Power Lawyers” by <i>The Hollywood Reporter</i> <p> Jenner &amp; Block Partners <a href="https://jenner.com/people/AndrewBart">Andrew H. Bart</a> and <a href="https://jenner.com/people/RichardStone">Richard L. Stone</a>, co-chairs of the firm’s Content, Media &amp; Entertainment Practice, have been recognized as among the top 100 “Power Lawyers” by <em>The Hollywood Reporter </em>(<em>THR</em>).&nbsp; Each year, <em>THR</em> researches major deals and lawsuits in the entertainment industry “to determine the 100 most influential attorneys in Hollywood.”&nbsp; In its profile of Mr. Bart, <em>THR</em> notes that he won a $50 million judgment against streaming music website Grooveshark on behalf of UMG Recordings, Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group.&nbsp; The article also notes that he successfully defended rap superstar Jay Z in a copyright infringement case.&nbsp; The profile of Mr. Stone highlights his representation of Fox Television Stations in&nbsp; a copyright dispute against FilmOn and his defense of WME-IMG against NCAA athletes who are demanding compensation for their participation in televised games</p> 5 May 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15155 https://jenner.com/library “Jenner & Block Insights” Series Features the Battle of the Economic Experts <p> <iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="255" mozallowfullscreen="" src="//player.vimeo.com/video/163433999" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="450"></iframe></p> <p> Jenner &amp; Block’s video series features the recent “Battle of the Economic Experts.”&nbsp; Now it its 10<sup>th</sup> year, the program drew an audience of nearly 100 people as a panel of five experts delved into issues including the 2016 presidential election, the energy market, the M&amp;A outlook and the status of the stock market.&nbsp; In this excerpt from the program (12:23), Partner <a href="https://jenner.com/people/MarkHarris">Mark A. Harris</a>, chair of the Private Equity Practice, asked panelists about their thoughts on where the current US economy is heading.</p> 9 May 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15163 https://jenner.com/library Special Counsel Kelly Hagedorn Shortlisted for Luxury Law Rising Star Award <p> Jenner &amp; Block Special Counsel <a href="https://jenner.com/people/KellyHagedorn">Kelly Hagedorn </a>is shortlisted for the Luxury Law Rising Star Award.&nbsp; Winners will be announced at the Gala Awards Dinner in London on May 16, 2016.&nbsp; The Luxury Law Awards recognize the skills that it takes to guide a luxury business or brand to profitable success and the legal teams who stand behind the best luxury business leaders.&nbsp; The Awards are organized with the Luxury Law Summit, which brings together luxury business leaders with the legal advisers who support their businesses.</p> <p> Ms. Hagedorn is special counsel in the firm’s London office.&nbsp; She focuses her practice on white collar crime, bribery and corruption and international disputes involving fraud allegations.&nbsp; Clients in a broad range of sectors, including oil and gas, telecommunications and financial services, seek her counsel in regulatory investigations and other matters.</p> 11 May 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15168 https://jenner.com/library Michigan Supreme Court Agrees with Firm’s Amicus Brief in Criminal Case <p> The Michigan Supreme Court agreed with the reasoning of an amicus brief filed by the firm in a criminal case regarding a woman convicted in 2002 of the sexual abuse of her adopted son, who later recanted his story.&nbsp;</p> <p> Ms. Swain served more than seven years of a 25- to 50-year sentence in prison before her son, as an adult, recanted his story.&nbsp; After a confirming polygraph and corroborating testimony,including from newly discovered witnesses who were known to the prosecution but not disclosed to the defense prior to her original trial, the original trial judge granted her motion for relief from judgment and set aside her four convictions.&nbsp;</p> <p> Since then, the Michigan Court of Appeals has twice reversed her efforts to obtain a new trial.&nbsp; On May 18, 2016,&nbsp; Michigan’s highest court reversed the earlier judgment of the Court of Appeals and remanded the case to the Calhoun Circuit Court for Ms. Swain’s requested relief—a&nbsp;new trial.</p> <p> The firm filed the amicus brief on behalf of nine current and former Michigan prosecutors, including one who previously prosecuted the case.&nbsp; Submitted at the request of the court, the brief examines the question of, under Michigan law, what standards must be met by a defendant alleging wrongful conviction to be granted a new trial.&nbsp; The brief, which was referenced by Ms. Swain’s lawyer during the rebuttal portion of his argument, argues for a broad reading of Michigan’s statute and court rules to provide relief from convictions where there is substantial evidence that a person is actually innocent and discusses policy implications surrounding the interpretation of the law.&nbsp;</p> <p> The Michigan Supreme Court held that the Court of Appeals(1) misapplied the plain text of MCR 6.502(G)(2) in requiring defendants claiming actual innocence to establish diligence in pursuing and presenting new evidence to the trial court, and (2) “erred in failing to give proper deference to the specific findings of the trail court that the defendant was entitled to a new trial.&nbsp; The defendant provided a ‘claim of new evidence that was not discovered before the first’ motion for relief from judgment, MCR 6.502(G)(2), and we conclude that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in ordering a new trial on the facts of this case.”Going forward, the Michigan Supreme Court’s holding is expected to facilitate innocence claims within the State of Michigan, by easing the procedural bars to making such claims.</p> <p> Sealing a complete victory for Ms. Swain, the Calhoun County Prosecutor has indicated that he will <a href="http://www.battlecreekenquirer.com/story/news/local/2016/05/18/lorinda-swain-get-new-trial/84538134/">not seek to retry Ms. Swain</a>.</p> <p> The team that authored the brief was led by Associate <a href="https://jenner.com/people/ChadRay">Chad J. Ray</a>, who was supervised and guided by Partners <a href="https://jenner.com/people/SaraHorton">Sara Tonnies Horton</a> and <a href="https://jenner.com/people/PaulMargolis">Paul D. Margolis</a>.</p> 18 May 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15187 https://jenner.com/library Partner Thomas Perrelli Discusses Government’s Efforts at Mortgage Relief <p> Jenner &amp; Block Partner <a href="https://jenner.com/people/ThomasPerrelli">Thomas J. Perrelli</a> is quoted at length in an article that examines efforts of government prosecutors to take billions of dollars from banks and give it to consumers in the form of mortgage relief.&nbsp; Mr. Perrelli helped negotiate the landmark National Mortgage Settlement (NMS) when he served as Associate Attorney General at the US Department of Justice; he is now monitor for a separate Citigroup Inc. settlement.&nbsp;</p> <p> Titled “<a href="https://jenner.com//system/assets/assets/9466/original/Perrelli_20Corporate_20Counsel_20May_202016.pdf">Too Little, Too Late</a>?” the article in <em>Corporate Counsel</em> explains that some practitioners have hailed the mortgage relief plans for their transparency while some critics have complained that the relief was too small and came too late to help people who lost their homes.&nbsp; “Too little, too late? Not for the people who were helped,” Mr. Perrelli says, adding that the NMS had “an enormous impact on those lives.”&nbsp;</p> <p> Regarding the Citigroup monitorship, Mr. Perrelli says that it includes a focus on affordable rental housing because it’s needed now.&nbsp; He also observes that some achievements can’t be measured in dollars and cents, citing the healthy “multiplier effect” that the settlements have on communities and in helping deteriorating neighborhoods.&nbsp; “I am a big believer that it is better for everyone to work extremely hard to keep people in their homes.&nbsp; Foreclosure has individual, neighborhood and societal effects with unseen costs as well,” he says.&nbsp; He also says that he hopes researchers look beyond the banks themselves, at the economy, “and ask what other things could we have done as a society or in Congress.&nbsp; Hopefully, we’ll come out of this with ‘here are some things that worked, and here are things that need to be adjusted.’ “</p> 20 May 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15191 https://jenner.com/library Firm Wins Closely Watched Title VII Employment Discrimination Case Before US Supreme Court <p> Jenner &amp; Block won a closely watched Title VII employment discrimination case on behalf of client CRST Van Expedited, Inc.&nbsp; On May 19, 2016, the US Supreme Court vacated an Eighth Circuit ruling that overturned an award of fees to CRST with respect to 67 individual sexual harassment claims that were dismissed because the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) had litigated the claims without first investigating and conciliating them as the statute requires.</p> <p> The Eighth Circuit had vacated a $4.7 million award of attorneys’ fees and costs to CRST even though all but one of the 270 individual sex discrimination claims brought by the &nbsp;EEOC against the trucking firm were dismissed.&nbsp; In doing so, the Eighth Circuit held that no attorneys’ fees could be assessed against the EEOC under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act for claims that were not dismissed on the merits.&nbsp;</p> <p> In December, the Court granted CRST’s petition for review.&nbsp; In March, in his 18<sup>th</sup> oral argument before the Court, Partner <a href="https://jenner.com/people/PaulSmith">Paul M. Smith</a> argued that the EEOC can be liable for a prevailing defendant’s legal fees where the federalagency had litigated the case without first satisfying Title VII’s mandatory presuit requirements of investigating the claims, finding reasonable cause for them, and attempting to conciliate them.</p> <p> In its unanimous opinion in <em>CRST Vans Expedited v. EEOC,</em> the Court, in an opinion by Justice Anthony Kennedy, held that a defendant “does not need to obtain a favorable judgment on the merits of a Title VII claim to be a ‘prevailing party.’”&nbsp; Justice Kennedy explained that the defendant has “fulfilled its primary objective whenever the plaintiff’s challenge is rebuffed, irrespective of the precise reason for the court’s decision.&nbsp; The defendant may prevail even if the court’s final judgment rejects the plaintiff’s claim for a nonmerits reason.”</p> <p> However, the Court sent the case back to the Eighth Circuit to address additional issues not previously decided by that court: “The Court declines to decide the argument, raised by the Commission for the first time during the merits stage of this case, whether a defendant must obtain a preclusive judgment in order to prevail.&nbsp; The Commission’s failure to articulate its preclusion theory earlier has resulted in inadequate briefing on the issue, and the parties dispute whether the district court’s judgment was in fact preclusive.&nbsp; The Commission also submits that the Court should affirm on the alternative ground that, even if CRST is a prevailing party, the Commission’s position that it had satisfied its presuit obligations was not frivolous, unreasonable, or groundless.&nbsp; These matters are left for the Eighth Circuit to consider in the first instance.”</p> <p> In addition to Mr. Smith, the team representing CRST in this matter since the beginning included Partners<a href="https://jenner.com/people/JohnMathiasJr">John H. Mathias Jr</a>., <a href="https://jenner.com/people/JamesMalysiak">James T. Malysiak</a>, <a href="https://jenner.com/people/CarlaRozycki">Carla J. Rozycki</a><em>, </em>&nbsp;<a href="https://jenner.com/people/JessicaAmunson">Jessica Ring Amunson</a>, <a href="https://jenner.com/people/SallySearsCoder">Sally K. Sears Coder</a>, <a href="https://jenner.com/people/RichardCampbell">Richard P. Campbell</a> and <a href="https://jenner.com/people/MicheleSlachetka">Michele L. Slachetka</a>; former Partner Robert Markowski; Associates <a href="https://jenner.com/people/BenjaminEidelson">Benjamin M. Eidelson</a>, <a href="https://jenner.com/people/AshleySchumacher">Ashley M. Schumacher</a> and <a href="https://jenner.com/people/ChristineBowman">Christine M. Bowman</a>; paralegals Cheryl Kras and Cheryl Olson; and secretaries Carolyn Huggins and Sheree Anyiam.</p> <p> A large number of legal publications, including <a href="http://www.law360.com/articles/798192/breaking-high-court-punts-on-eeoc-bid-to-skirt-fees-in-bias-case"><em>Law360</em></a>, the <em><a href="http://www.nationallawjournal.com/id=1202758059426">National Law Journal</a></em>, <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/usa-employment-fees-idUSL2N18G29J">Reuters</a> and <em><a href="https://essential.bna.com/login/signin?msg=deny&amp;url=http%3A%2F%2Fwsauth.bna.com%2Fwsauth%2Fblawauth%3Ftarget%3Dhttps%3A%2F%2Fwww.bloomberglaw.com%2Fstart&amp;lddty=-518&amp;pcv=">Bloomberg</a></em>, have reported on the Court’s decision.</p> 19 May 2016 https://jenner.com/library/news/15192