Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Law Firm Conflicts Allegations Making News

It's always fascinating to see coverage of conflicts allegations and related news cross over into general media channels. Here are two stories that caught our eye. First, a situation which highlights challenges of finding representation when the conflicts landscape is more complex: "DVDFab files motion in lawsuit – shows it’s David vs. Goliath case" --
  • "Recently filed documents on the AACS-LA vs. DVDFab case show similarities of the battle between David and Goliath. It shows how little time DVDFab had to prepare itself and how hard it was to find a law firm to represent the company in the United States. Because the AACS-LA is a consortium of many companies (e.g. movie studios, Microsoft, Toshiba, Panasonic, IBM and more), many well known law firms were unable to defend DVDFab due to conflict of interest."
  • "Between February 26th and the 4th of March, DVDFab tried to find a law firm to represent them. Due to conflict of interest several law firms rejected DVDFab and referred DVDFab to other law firms, some of those didn’t want to handle the case or didn’t have time. It wasn’t until the 17th of March before DVDFab signed an agreement with a law firm to represent them."
  • "Between February 26th and the 4th of March, DVDFab tried to find a law firm to represent them. Due to conflict of interest several law firms rejected DVDFab and referred DVDFab to other law firms, some of those didn’t want to handle the case or didn’t have time. It wasn’t until the 17th of March before DVDFab signed an agreement with a law firm to represent them."
For our second, we turn, oddly enough, to twitter, where we often post risk stories (and track those of you retweeting or reposting our updates -- thank you!): "Gibson Dunn defends GFH role after jailed ex-GC claims conflict" --
  • "Gibson Dunn & Crutcher has defended its representation of Dubai-based private equity firm GFH Capital, after the client's former general counsel accused the firm of having a conflict of interest."
  • "David Haigh, the former managing director of Leeds United and one-time GC of GFH, has taken to Twitter to make the accusation against his former employer's lawyers.
    Haigh is currently in jail in Dubai, having been arrested on 18 May after GFH accused him of committing fraud, embezzlement and money laundering while he was employed at the bank."
  • "Gibson Dunn's litigation team is being led by partner Peter Gray, described by Haigh's spokesperson as "for many years a friend, legal adviser and business partner of [Haigh's]". In an email to Legal Week, Gray called the conflict allegations 'untrue and defamatory'."
For those without access beyond the linked paywall, a summary of the general story unfolding is available via the guardian and the accuser/accussed's twitter stream in question is located here.

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