• DLA Piper said Thursday that it is acquiring about 60 lawyers in Los Angeles through a merger with the L.A.-based boutique, Liner LLP, planned for October. DLA Piper’s global co-chairman, Roger Meltzer, said the deal raises the firm to among the largest in Los Angeles. ( BLB )

• Amidst the brouhaha surrounding Kasowitz Benson Torres’ representation of Trump, the firm is losing partner Charles Miller, who after 11 years is leaving for the 70-attorney firm Tarter Krinsky & Drogin. Miller, who will be a partner leading Tarter Krinky’s new securities and financial services litigation group, didn’t address the turmoil at Kasowitz but said he’s looking for “something smaller” with “a little more warmth.” ( New York Law Journal )

• The $11.2 million settlement over the big data breach at adultery-dating site Ashley Madison raises an unusual problem for class-action attorneys: How do you reach class members who would prefer to keep their identities under the covers? ( National Law Journal )

• One of the first things Fish & Richardson patent litigator Danielle Joy “DJ” Healey hopes to do since announcing she has changed genders is to testify at a Texas Senate hearing on a bill that would restrict access to bathrooms for transgender Texans. Fish said the firm fully supports Healey, who was formerly known as David Healey. ( Texas Lawyer )

• Robert Mueller, the U.S. special counsel investigating possible ties between the Donald Trump campaign and Russia in last year’s election, is examining a broad range of transactions involving Trump’s businesses as well as those of his associates. That crosses a red line that Trump has drawn. ( Bloomberg via BLB , Bloomberg ) With a showdown looming, Trump’s lawyers and aides are said to be looking for evidence on Mueller’s team to undermine his probe or possibly fire Mueller. ( New York Times ) The chain reaction Trump could set off by trying to fire Mueller. ( Bloomberg ) Mark Corallo, the spokesman for Trump’s legal team, has reportedly resigned less than two months after taking the job. ( Politico )

• Dorsey & Whitney’s election of the first female to head its policy committee is a great way to show other women they can go into leadership roles, said Minneapolis-based tax partner Kim Severson. Severson, whom Dorsey partners elected to that position this week, talked to BLB about her goals for the job, among other things. ( BLB )

 

 

Law Firm Business

• In his new book “The Client Decides,” Paul Weiss lawyer and former chairman Martin London recalls his experiences at the firm, from representing clients including Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis to Vice President Spiro Agnew during the Watergate investigation, to his role fighting then-real estate mogul Donald Trump in a RICO case. ( BLB )

• Quinn Emanuel hosted a speaking- and book-promotion event at a luxury hotel in midtown Manhattan by the 41-year old retired Navy SEAL who claims he shot and killed Osama Bin Laden. Robert O’Neill agreed to a Quinn-sponsored tour of such events after his 6’5″ lawyer, litigator Lazar Raynal, joined Quinn Emanuel in March from McDermott Will & Emery. ( BLB )

• Katten Muchin Rosenman said Natalia Sorgente, a former associate deputy U.S. attorney general and former chief of staff at the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources division, has joined the firm as a partner in its environmental and workplace safety litigation practices. ( Bloomberg BNA via BLB )

• The Harvard Law-educated Linklaters associate suspended in connection with an alleged insider trading scheme involving her husband didn’t do “anything wrong,” her defense attorney said. ( Am Law Daily )

 

 

Legal Market

• Hawaiian real estate developer Aina Lea Inc. already owed Greenberg Traurig, Nixon Peabody and several other law firms nearly $900,000 when it filed for bankruptcy late last month. It’s now looking to hire lawyers from some of those firms to guide it through its Chapter 11 case. And other bankruptcy news. ( Am Law Daily )

• Software giant SAP SE confirmed that it has hired law firm Baker McKenzie to conduct an investigation into news reports of a payment to a company linked to the son of South Africa’s president. ( Bloomberg )

• ZTO Express Inc., the Chinese delivery service that had the biggest U.S. initial public offering in 2016, was sued by an investor for allegedly inflating profit margins to exceed industry peers and lure investors. ( Bloomberg via BLB )

• The family of an Australian women killed by a Minneapolis police officer hired a lawyer experienced in police-involved shootings. ( CNN )

• Why do financial companies use mandatory arbitration clauses in customer contracts to keep disputes out of court, and why do you consumer advocates hate those clauses? A Q&A. ( Bloomberg Businessweek )

 

 

Regulators and Enforcement

• The brief history of tech-enabled ridesharing is not really a story about transportation, but a story of clashes with regulators. Uber and Lyft versus cities and courts. ( Bloomberg View )

• The Federal Trade Commission said it picked Shearman & Sterling antitrust partner Bruce Hoffman to take over as acting director of the agency’s competition team. ( Bloomberg BNA via BLB )

 

 

The Trump Administration

• Exxon Mobil Corp. says it is legally challenging a $2 million fine assessed against it by the U.S. Treasury Department for “egregious” violations of sanctions against Russia when now-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was chief executive. ( Bloomberg ) What’s going on in the strange legal fight between the secretaries of Treasury and State? ( Washington Post )

• Since Trump fired Preet Bharara as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and 45 other U.S. attorneys, in March, the White House has essentially gone mum about two-thirds of all the U.S. attorneys offices, said Ira Sorkin of New York’s Mintz & Gold, a former deputy chief of the criminal division in the SDNY. ( Am Law Daily )

• If the Senate confirms Trump’s pick to lead the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Janet Dhillon, she’ll give up her annual salary of $1.5 million for her current job as GC at Burlington Stores Inc, to get $172,000 a year as EEOC chief. She’ll also give up various other perks and roles she currently has, she said in her ethics agreement. ( National Law Journal )

 

 

 

 

Happening in SCOTUS and Other Courts

• The U.K. Supreme Court has its first female president, Baroness Hale of Richmond. ( The Times )

 

Laterals, Moves, Law Firm Work

• Reed Smith said it has hired energy and infrastructure transactions lawyer J. Todd Culwell as a partner in its 65-attorney Houston, Texas, office, in the latest expansion of its global energy & natural resources practice. Culwell joins from Andrews Kurth. ( Reedsmith.com )

• As FedEx Corp.'s longtime general counsel Christine Richards plans to retire Sept. 30, the company has not yet named a replacement. ( Corporate Counsel )

 

 

Technology

• Top in-house lawyers at Uber Technologies Inc., Oracle Corp. and Twitter Inc. talked recently about the challenges of managing legal, regulatory, policy and business matters for companies with operations in multiple countries with varying cultures. ( Corporate Counsel )

• As Amazon.com prepares to close out its merger with Whole Foods, the FTC is investigating consumer group allegations that price comparisons that the online shopping giant lists for products are misleading. ( Mashable )

• China has a huge artificial intelligence plan. ( Bloomberg )

• Facebook’s encrypted-messaging service WhatsApp has been experiencing disruptions in China, prompting concerns that the country is cracking on such services. ( Legaltech News )

• Twitter says it is making progress against harassment on its site, but analysts said the company’s own data show it still has more work to do about the problem. ( Wired )

 

 

Legal Education

• July applications for California’s oft-criticized bar exam topped 10,000, up more than 1,000 from last year’s number. The jump may be attribitable to this year’s exam being held over two days instead of the traditional three, a state bar executive said. ( The Recorder )

 

 

Miscellaneous

• Morrison & Foerster said Rachel Krevans, the former head of its intellectual property practice who helped lead Apple’s smartphone IP war against Samsung, died of cancer at age 60. ( The Recorder )

• O.J. Simpson was granted parole and could be released from a Nevada prison as early as Oct. 1, at which point he will have served the minimum nine years of the 33-year sentence he received for a botched armed robbery. ( Associated Press )

Compiled by Rick Mitchell and edited by Casey Sullivan.