Business & Practice

Wake Up Call: Former PIMCO CEO to Plead Guilty in College Admissions Scandal

Oct. 18, 2019, 11:46 AM
  • Federal prosecutors said Douglas Hodge, who once led giant bond manager Pacific Investment Management Co., will plead guilty to charges in the U.S. college admissions scandal. Hodge, represented by Ropes & Gray partner Brien O’Connor, is accused of using a middleman to bribe sports coaches to get his kids into elite universities. He’s one of 35 parents charged in the scandal. (BN via BLAW)

  • A Walmart compliance lawyer and a former clerk to Justice Brett Kavanaugh in his pre-Supreme Court days were among Trump district court nominees that moved forward in the Senate yesterday. Meanwhile, some other Trump nominations hit snags, including those for White House lawyer Steven Menashi and U.S. District Judge Halil Suleyman Ozerden. (BLAW via BLB)

  • San Francisco-based litigation fund start-up Legalist hired SoftBank Vision Fund’s former investment director, Sean Liu, as its new chief financial officer. (PE Hub)

  • Law firms, not known to be the tightest ships for data security, often get hit by cyber breaches and accidental leaks through their relationships with third-party vendors, says a report. (Law.com)

  • The legal arm of Big Four accounting firm KMPG absorbed Romanian law firm Fernbach & Partners, in a move it said is aimed at creating the top technology, intellectual property, and privacy practice in Romania. (Legaltechnews.com)

  • And KPMG’s international tax group in Washington hired former Treasury Department attorney-adviser Gary Scanlon. Scanlon helped develop regulations and guidance tied to the 2017 Trump tax law. (Bloomberg Tax)

  • The chief legal and policy officer of electric scooter company Bird Rides Inc., David Estrada, moved to robotics company Nuro Inc., which builds self-driving delivery vehicles. Estrada has had top in-house roles at tech companies including Yahoo!, YouTube, and Google X, the search giant’s research and development arm, among others. (Corporate Counsel)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Goodwin Procter’s director for diversity told lawmakers that his firm and other firms looking to diversify their ranks are expanding recruitment efforts at law schools “that tend to get overlooked.” (BLAW via BLB)

  • White & Case lawyers for activist hedge fund Amber Capital got a French commercial court to order media mogul Arnaud Lagardère to publish the past decade of annual accounts for his private holding company. (Financial Times)

  • Hinshaw & Culbertson has earned over $1.1 million representing Illinois’ legally embattled statehouse speaker Mike Madigan, according to a report. The long-serving Democrat’s legal bills so far have topped $1.5 million overall as he fights two federal lawsuits and other legal problems. (Chicago Sun Times)

  • The House Judiciary Committee hired an impeachment expert, Kaplan Hecker & Fink of counsel Joshua Matz, as it prepares for its expanded role in the impeachment inquiry. (National Law Journal)

  • Three intellectual property pros have started a new platform called VideoLabs Inc., which they say is aimed at disrupting the “current costly patent system” for video. Led by former IP executives at Boeing Management Company and Lenovo and an ex-DLA Piper lawyer, the company says it could help members avoid IP litigation risk and save a lot of money on licensing costs for video. (PR Newswire)

  • Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht’s global managing partner John Pierce describes his firm as the fastest growing firm ever. But lately the firm has lost several partners, and it’s fighting a former partner’s lawsuit. (American Lawyer)

  • A Georgia county district attorney’s office was hit by complaints over its Halloween display—a skeleton with yellow crime scene markers taped around it in the middle of the lobby. (WSBTV.com)

Pro Bono

  • The American Bar Association said this year’s national pro bono week celebration, running Oct. 20-26, focuses on a need for legal help for domestic and sexual violence survivors. (AmericanBar.org)

  • A shortage of pro bono lawyers in Hawaii is hurting immigrants seeking asylum in the U.S., officials say in this report. (Hawaii Public Radio)

Laterals, Moves, In-house, Promotions

  • Kaufman Dolowich & Voluck expanded in Florida, opening an Orlando office. It added Orlando-based litigation partner Abbye E. Alexander and associates Andrew L. Burnstine and Christopher J. Perini, from Quintairos, Prieto, Wood, & Boyer. (KDVLaw.com)

  • Stroock & Stroock & Lavan added real estate lawyer Leslie Byrd as special counsel in New York. She’s a Harvard Law grad and previously spent 13 years at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. (Stroock.com)

  • Snell & Wilmer’s Orange County, California, office added two estate planning and tax specialists in its private client services group, getting partner Mark Powell and associate Charles W. Daff from Dorsey & Whitney. (Swlaw.com)

Legal Actions, Bankruptcies, Decisions

  • Netflix told a federal court that the law firm made famous by the Panama Papers scandal can’t block release of a new Netflix film that portrays the firm’s lawyers as villains. (BLAW via BLB)

Regulators and Enforcement

  • The Federal Trade Commission wrote to law firms and marketing companies warning them about potentially deceptive advertisements soliciting clients for personal injury lawsuits against pharmaceutical manufacturers. (Policy & Medicine)


  • Latham & Watkins launched a new mobile app aimed at helping investors make sense of the increasingly complex regulatory environment for cross-border direct investment. (Corporate Counsel)

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; Molly Ward at mward@bloomberglaw.com

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