Wilson Sonsini Lands Justice Department Fraud Section Vet

Aug. 5, 2019, 6:48 PM

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati has added to its government investigations practice in Washington through the hire of a long-time former federal prosecutor who has focused on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Tarek Helou.

Helou joins the firm as a partner from the U.S. Justice Department where he had last served as an assistant chief of its FCPA unit, which is part of DOJ’s criminal division, since 2014.

He has led or supervised more than 100 FCPA probes involving software, pharmaceutical, and oil and gas companies, representing corporate executives, heads of state, and companies. FCPA cases typically focus on allegations of corporate bribery of foreign officials, and related corruption charges.

“WSGR is seeing growing client demand for FCPA investigations expertise, especially from multinational enterprises facing increased regulatory obligations and scrutiny in global markets,” said Doug Clark, Wilson Sonsini’s managing partner, in a statement. “Tarek’s work has enabled him to develop extensive knowledge of how the DOJ investigates companies and individuals in corporate criminal matters.”

Before moving to Main Justice in Washington, Helou was an assistant U.S. attorney out of the Northern District of California in San Francisco from 2007 to 2012. His government service was preceded by five years with Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Including Helou, there are 17 attorneys in Wilson Sonsini’s fraud and anti-corruption practice , according the firm’s website, who work out of the firm’s headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif., as well as its San Francisco, Washington, and New York offices.

The team is primarily made up of former federal prosecutors, including three who worked stints with the U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York in lower Manhattan, arguably one of the most prestigious DOJ outposts.

Aside from this newest Justice Department hire, Wilson Sonsini’s recent lawyer pickups have included John Wehrli, who joined the firm’s technology transactions practice in San Diego last month from Jones Day. In Washington, the firm hired former Arent Fox partners and siblings Georgia Ravitz and James “Jamie” Ravitz in the spring.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sam Skolnik in Washington at sskolnik@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jessie Kokrda Kamens at jkamens@bloomberglaw.com; Rebekah Mintzer at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com

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