Shoba Pillay is a partner in the firm’s Investigations, Compliance, and Defense Practice, and the Data Privacy and Cybersecurity Practice. She has more than ten years of investigations, trial, and appellate experience in fraud, cybercrime, data privacy, export control and sanctions, trade secrets and intellectual property cases.
Prior to joining the firm in 2021, Ms. Pillay was an Assistant US Attorney in the US Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Illinois. There, she took 18 federal criminal trials to verdict, argued 9 appeals in the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, and first-chaired complex investigations and jury trials. Among her significant prosecutions, Ms. Pillay first-chaired a trade secrets case involving a Chinese competitor, prosecuted a computer intrusion of a Fortune 500 company, and prosecuted a federal defense contractor for illegally exporting technical data to China.
While serving in the USAO’s National Security and Cybercrime Section, Ms. Pillay developed substantial experience supervising and managing complex investigations and prosecutions involving cybercrime, export control and international sanctions violations, theft of trade secrets, international terrorism, and espionage.
Ms. Pillay has also been very active in criminal justice reform. With a team of federal judges, prosecutors, defense counsel, and pretrial services officers, she helped form and operate the Sentencing Options that Achieve Results (SOAR) Court in the Northern District of Illinois – a diversion program that provides an alternative to incarceration for non-violent federal pretrial defendants.
A prolific thought leader, her articles and public speaking engagements have covered a range of topics including trade secret protection and enforcement, cybersecurity and cybercrime, and human trafficking.
Ms. Pillay is an adjunct professor at the University of Illinois, College of Law, where she teaches cybercrime investigations and cybersecurity, and at the Northwestern University School of Law, where she teaches trial advocacy.