Wake Up Call: Judge Issues Warning for Manafort Lawyers

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• Top lawyers from Google, Facebook, and Twitter who testified in front of Congress this week about Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election had Big Law back up. Attorneys from three law firms — WilmerHale, Mayer Brown and Debevoise — have been prepping them as witnesses, and earlier helped conduct internal reviews to help the GCs understand what actually happened at their own companies during the election. (BLB)

• Jeffrey Wertkin, who worked for Akin Gump, will plead guilty after being charged with trying to sell copies of two secret lawsuits involving companies that were under investigation by the U.S. Justice Department, his lawyer said. “Jeff led a good and honorable life for many years,” Cris Arguedas, his lawyer, said in an email. “In a lapse of judgment he made some serious mistakes. He is doing his best now to make amends.” (Bloomberg News via BLB)

• The judge overseeing Paul Manafort’s tax and money-laundering case in Washington had a stern warning for his lawyer: Stop with the sidewalk speeches. “This is a criminal trial and not a public-relations campaign,” U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said at a hearing Thursday. She admonished lawyers to “do their talking in the courtroom, and the pleadings, and not on the courthouse steps.”  (Bloomberg News via BLB)

• U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson has a record on hot-button issues that might cause President Donald Trump’s already overheated Twitter feed to burst into flames. Earlier this year, for instance, she dismissed a lawsuit filed by the parents of two of the four Americans who died at the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya in 2012, seeking to hold Trump’s election opponent Hillary Clinton responsible. And four years ago, she sided with the Obama administration request and put on hold a lawsuit by House Republicans demanding papers related to former Attorney General Eric Holder’s botched Fast-and-Furious gun-tracking operation. (Bloomberg News via BLB)

• Juan Picón, the Madrid-based global co-chairman of DLA Piper and corporate partner who played an instrumental role in the law firm’s expansion in Latin America and Europe, abruptly departed the firm and has joined Latham & Watkins. (BLB)

• Big Law Business caught up with Allison Lucas, who was hired as BuzzFeed’s first lawyer in 2013 and now runs a legal department of nine attorneys and five copyright managers. In the four years since she joined, the company has grown from just over 250 to approximately 1,600 employees, and her legal role at the intersection of tech, media, and entertainment has only grown busier. “I think getting data from the government is getting harder, so we’re filing more FOIA lawsuits than we have before,” she said. (BLB)

• The former Linklaters associate whose husband pleaded guilty to insider trading charges is planning to restart her legal career. (The American Lawyer)

• NPR has retained an outside law firm to conduct a review of how it handled sexual harassment allegations against its now-former news head, Michael Oreskes. (CNN Money)

• There have been just seven African American Big Law managing partners or chairs over the past 25 years. Vivia Chen spoke with them about their careers and advice they may have for younger lawyers. (The American Lawyer)