White Collar Criminal Defense
Kaplan Hecker & Fink excels in representing companies, boards of directors, and executives in conducting internal investigations and responding to criminal investigations, enforcement, and regulatory proceedings. Our lawyers have extensive experience at all stages of the investigation and litigation process, including representing our clients at trial. With a team of litigators that includes six high-level former federal prosecutors and three former public defenders, our team is uniquely prepared to take on our clients’ most complex legal challenges. Across diverse industries and a wide range of settings, our efficient, talented lawyers rely on their significant and diverse subject matter expertise to deliver superlative results. Kaplan Hecker was described as “one of the best, “go to” white collar boutique firms in NY” where partner Sean Hecker has “assembled an all-star team that is best in class in white collar criminal defense” in a 2023 client review for The Legal 500. In 2023, Chambers ranked Kaplan Hecker as one of New York’s top specialist firms in White-Collar Crime and Government Investigations. Chambers notes that partner Sean Hecker has “a really nice touch with clients, prosecutors, judges and juries” and is described as “very smart, great with clients, and he has exquisite judgment,” ranking him in Band 1 among New York’s top white-collar litigators and as a top trial lawyer nationwide. Partner Jenna Dabbs is likewise described as “able to deal with very challenging individuals to understand the complexities of a case” in her ranking for White-Collar Crime and Government Investigations.
In March 2019, Kaplan Hecker won a “rare” acquittal for Robert Bogucki, the former head of the Barclays’ foreign-exchange trading desk in New York, at the conclusion of the Government’s case. Mr. Bogucki had been charged with wire fraud for allegedly engaging in a “front-running” scheme in connection with a 6-billion-pound foreign exchange transaction between Barclays and Hewlett-Packard Co. Lawyers from Kaplan Hecker successfully argued that no jury could reasonably convict our client on the evidence presented, leading Judge Charles Breyer to grant a full acquittal at the close of the Government’s case. Judge Breyer noted that it was the first time he had granted such an acquittal in his twenty years on the bench. Global Investigations Review honored Kaplan Hecker’s work in the matter by naming Bogucki its 2019 “Most Important Court Case of the Year," and Benchmark Litigation recognized the case as a 2020 "Impact Case of the Year."
Other representative white-collar criminal defense matters include:
- Securing a favorable settlement for our client, after he and ten other individuals and entities were charged by the SEC for their alleged participation in long-running fraudulent schemes.
- Fending off an investigation of potential insider trading and violation of SEC rules related to trading in non-firm trading accounts by our client. After multiple presentations and having our client testify with the SEC, both the DOJ and the SEC declined to bring any charges.
- Representing numerous individuals in connection with DOJ and SEC investigations of alleged accounting improprieties, resulting in both agencies declining to charge in one recent representation.
- Representing individuals in connection with DOJ investigations into “spoofing” violations.
- Representing multiple individuals in connection with CFTC investigations of certain bond issuances and related swaps trading.
- Representing a former executive in connection with an SEC investigation of earnings management issues.
- Representing numerous individuals in connection with multiple parallel SDNY and SEC investigations of various corporate accounting practices.
- Representing various individuals in separate federal criminal investigations into insider trading, resulting in the DOJ declining to prosecute in two recent representations.
Prior to joining Kaplan Hecker, some of our lawyers’ representative white-collar criminal defense matters included:
- Representing multiple individuals at various financial institutions in DOJ and CFTC investigations relating to foreign exchange trading practices.
- Representing a hedge fund founder in an SEC investigation of potential insider trading.
- Representing a major investment bank in federal and state regulatory investigations relating to mortgage origination, underwriting, and securitization practices.
- Representing the former global head of structured-products ABS collateralized debt obligations at a major investment bank in an SEC inquiry into the offering of notes in a synthetic CDO.
- Representing a former pharmaceutical company executive in DOJ and SEC accounting fraud investigations.
- Representing several foreign financial institutions in the DOJ Tax Division’s Program for Swiss Banks.
- Representing a multinational financial institution in connection with a criminal investigation into corruption in international soccer broadcasting.
- Representing a multinational pharmaceutical company in investigations by the Department of Justice and numerous state attorneys general relating to improper marketing practices.
- Representing an activist hedge fund in investigations by the New York Attorney General and the Securities and Exchange Commission into market manipulation and insider trading.
- Representing a Fortune 500 company in an SEC investigation into accounting improprieties and inadequate and inaccurate financial disclosures.