A group of Super Lawyers and Rising Stars selectees found themselves at the center of high-profile and high stakes cases in March. The following listees and their clients received exposure on a national scale.
Todd Spodek – Spodek, a criminal defense attorney and Rising Stars selectee in New York City, was retained in an international cyber fraud case centered on members of the Infraud Organization. The FBI deactivated the Infraud website and indicted 36 in the case, with Spodek representing one of the defendants who faces 20 years in prison on a RICO conspiracy. It is the largest fraud case of its kind, with Infraud being one of the longest running websites in the dark web that’s been taken down. The case is unique because ownership, leadership and avid users of the site were pursued for criminal activity. According to the Department of Justice press release, the Infraud Organization targeted more than 4.3 million credit cards, debit cards and bank accounts around the world and in all 50 states.
The case is being prosecuted in Las Vegas because law enforcement there has developed expertise in credit card fraud cases and previously obtained indictments against the credit card fraud syndicate known as “Carder.su.”
In addition, this is the first case of its kind with cryptocurrency at the forefront. Everyone involved in the case is alleged to have obtained Bitcoin or sold Bitcoin. The government sought to remand Spodek’s client, partially due to his exclusively using BitCoin, but he was released on bond and is back in New York.
Chris Dolan – One of the most read articles from the New Yorker this month featured Dolan, a personal injury attorney and Super Lawyers selectee based in San Francisco. It is a complex and emotional story about race, the nature of existence and parenthood when a child is declared dead but the family wants to keep her alive. Dolan took on the case pro bono despite having no experience with legal issues surrounding end of life. An interesting part of the story centers on two states, New York and New Jersey, where families can reject the concept of brain death if it violates religious beliefs.
Michael Avenatti – As more details come out about the alleged affair between Stephanie Clifford, a.k.a. Stormy Daniels, and President Donald Trump, a Super Lawyers listee is now part of the case. Clifford sued the president earlier this month, asking the court to void her nondisclosure agreement and Avenatti is her new attorney. Avenatti is a business litigation lawyer with KPMG in Newport Beach, California, who spent five years at a political consulting firm run by Rahm Emanuel, the former White House chief of staff under Barack Obama.