Business & Practice

Wake Up Call: Black Male Lawyers Disciplined More Often, California Bar Says

Nov. 18, 2019, 12:44 PM
  • Black male lawyers in California are much more likely to be targeted by client complaints than are attorneys from other groups, and they are put on probation and disbarred at a “disproportionate rate,” according to a study commissioned by the California state bar. In response to the study, the bar said it would hire a consultant on “bias-free decision-making” to review its disciplinary practices for possible unintended biases. (San Francisco Chronicle)

  • Paul Hastings hired a global anti-corruption and anti-bribery expert as a partner in Paris. The firm said Nicola Bonucci, the director for legal affairs at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, will join the office Dec. 1. Bonucci started as a legal adviser at the Paris-based policy think tank in 1993. (PaulHastings.com)

  • Google convinced the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal over whether the company improperly used copyrighted programming code owned by Oracle Corp. in its Android mobile operating system. The case, in which Oracle is seeking at least $8.8 billion in damages, has divided Silicon Valley. It promises to reshape the U.S. legal protections for software code. (BN via BLAW)

  • Google is represented by Goldstein & Russell’s Thomas Goldstein, who took over after the company’s previous counsel of record, Kannon Shanmugam, left Williams & Connolly for Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. Williams & Connolly; Keker, Van Nest & Peters; King & Spalding; and others also are advising Google. Oracle’s outside counsel includes Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe and Kirkland & Ellis. (National Law Journal)

  • Weil, Gotshal & Manges snapped up Akin Gump bankruptcy partner Neil Devaney to lead its business finance & restructuring practice. (BLAW via BLB)

  • Weil on Friday also became the latest firm to match the associate bonus scale announced earlier this month by Milbank, which ranges from $15,000 for first-year associates up to $100,000 for the most senior associates. (Above The Law)

  • Bumble Bee Foods LLC is getting ready to file for bankruptcy as it deals with climbing legal expenses from a criminal conviction and class-action litigation over its involvement in a price-fixing scheme for canned tuna. (WSJ) During the summer, the company hired Sullivan & Cromwell for advice. (BN via BLAW)

Lawyers, Law Firms, Pro Bono

  • Robert De Niro’s divorce attorney, Caroline Krauss, is leaving Blank Rome, where she was co-chair of the matrimonial and family law practice, to launch a boutique in New York and Connecticut. The new firm, Krauss Shaknes Tallentire & Messeri, will advise celebrities and high-net worth individuals. (BLAW via BLB)

  • Miami-based tax attorney Michael Kosnitzky, co-chairman of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman’s private wealth group, helps some of the world’s wealthiest people enjoy their wealth while they legally pay as little tax as possible. “Even the ultra-wealthy need protection, and maybe no more so than now,” Kosnitzky said. (Daily Business Review)

  • Baker McKenzie named Sydney-based climate change partner Ilona Millar as its global head of climate change. (Law.com)

  • Management-side work law firm Littler entered into an agreement with the Tennessee Association for Home Care, a non-profit organization representing home health agencies, to provide its members with resources for managing regulatory compliance and minimizing litigation risk, at a discounted rate. (Littler.com)


  • Goodwin Procter advised Promedior, Inc., a Massachusetts-based biotechnology company that developed a breakthrough treatment for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, on its agreement to be acquired by Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche for up to $1.39 billion. (Fierce Biotech)

  • Hogan Lovells represented software company Synopsys, Inc. on its acquisition of computer hardware maker DINI Group, which is based in California. No terms were disclosed. (YahooFinance.com)

  • Milbank client Canadian Solar Inc. sold 49% of three solar photovoltaic projects in Mexico to Korea Electric Power Corporation and fund manager Sprott Korea. The Korean companies also agreed to acquire Canadian Solar’s remaining interests in the projects after their commercial operation date. (Milbank) (Solar Industry)

Laterals, Moves, In-house, Promotions

  • Baker Donelson hired veteran in-house real estate lawyer Jeffrey M. Pomeroy as a shareholder in Birmingham, Ala. Pomeroy was previously executive vice president and general counsel for Birmingham-based real estate company Bayer Properties LLC. (Birmingham Business Journal)

Legal Actions, Bankruptcies, Decisions

  • Johnson & Johnson won a reduction in a $572 million judgment by an Oklahoma judge who said he made a $107 million error in his August decision penalizing the company for fueling the state’s opioid epidemic. J&J said it still intends to appeal. (BN via BLAW)

  • A San Francisco federal jury awarded Planned Parenthood more than $2 million in the non-profit’s lawsuit against a group of anti-abortion activists who recorded hidden camera videos to use in discrediting the organization. Planned Parenthood was represented by Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer. (The Recorder)

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at rMitchell@correspondent.bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebekah Mintzer at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com; Jessica Coomes at jcoomes@bloomberglaw.com

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