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April 25, 2007


Just playing devil's advocate here, but Yang could have been offered more responsibility or more interesting cases at Gibson than the other firm. At some point job satisfaction is worth more than slightly more money. Gibson is also a very large firm, with a diverse practice, though mostly representing the well-connected.

That said, it does seem that she was made an offer she couldn't refuse.


But is it believable that anybody would pay her more than Gibson where she got a reported $1.5 Million signing bonus. Because unless she's capable of playing shortstop in the majors, that's a pretty hefty bonus.

From Gibson's point of view, I can see her value (lots of ways to help out their defense of Lewis without actually participating). I'm just having a hard time seeing how she would be more valuable to anybody else.

To add to what WO said. I think it possible that she got the bonus at Gibson to woo her away from some place where she was going to get more annually. So it could be fair. And I've heard that Yang, at least, insists there was nothing toward here. But that wouldn't mean she'd KNOW if Gibson had been instructed to give her an offer she couldn't refuse. I mean, geez, the appearance is so awful!!

If you would like, I can go down to DiFi's office in SF and ask them personally. Just a thought.

Btw, love the work you have done. Please keep it up!

"Turned down a more lucrative offer". You have got to be kidding me. Yang had no client base, no accounts receivable to bring with her, and will create conflict issues on any Federal criminal case Gibson, Dunn handles for at least a couple of years. As another commenter noted, and I added to somewhat, several days ago on one of your posts on Yang's good fortune, when an attorney comes in from the cold to this level of partnership in a major law firm, there is usually a "buy in" of some sort for the right to receive senior general partner profit distributions. Again, client base and book of business or accounts receivable might be accepted as buy in consideration depending on the circumstances; but a waiver of buy in responsibilities for Yang and the gift to her of 1.5 mil together with immediate senior profit share rights is just flat insane. It would be insane in New York or DC where everything is highly inflated; on the West Coast (LA) it is simply beyond the pale. As far as I am concerned, this looks so outrageous that it must be considered patently questionableunless, and until, strictly proven otherwise.

There is a finite number of US Attorneys that have left office and gone to private practice over the last ten years, how many have received this type of deal? How many have received this deal even without the 1.5 mil "signing bonus"? My money is on NONE. Not even close. Show me one, just one, that is even in the same galaxy as Yang's deal. Where is Lam's deal? Where is Paul Charlton's deal? Where is Iglesias' deal? All have every bit as good of credentials and skills, if not demonstrably better, than Yang; where are their deals? Patently bogus!

FWIW, BMAZ is right... Law firms don't pay out that kind of money unless it "buys" something. What could Yang bring to the table that was any value, unless it was to get her out of the picture, so to speak. And, of course, it stinks to high heaven -- and it is probably impossible to prove that something untoward took place. Yang may not even be aware that she got 'gamed.' If I had that kind of money thrown at me, I doubt that I would care! ;-)

well, you see, there's your problem, right there ...

Either that's some funny lawyer logic, or her story is just not very credible.

it's not funny Lawyer logic, it's "BUSHISTA Lawyer" logic

and actually, you got more problems than that. take a look at what you wrote again:

Either that's some funny lawyer logic, or her story is just not very credible.

or ???

who said it had to be "OR"

can't it be both ???

in fact, I think "Bushista Lawyer Logic" implies that it lacks credibility

The only question I have is "Can she be disbarred for this ???"

sounds really fucking fishy to me when a Federal Attorney goes to work for the law firm that represents the target of an investigation that was under the supervision of the federal Attorney

can anybody else say "Conflict Of Interest" ???

Maybe someone should point this out to the WSJ law blog. They usually go gaga over the money- I bet there would be some choice words for Ms. Yang's new firm.

You people are desperate. The chances that any former U.S. Attorney could go to a firm that ISN'T defending the target of an investigation is almost nil. There are special conflict rules for former government lawyers for that very reason. Also, former U.S. attorneys are a hot commodity on the legal market regardless of what "client base" they bring in because 1) they have courtroom experience, which is very difficult for big firm attorneys to get and 2) rich people needing criminal defense want former prosecutors on the team. It's that simple. These speculations are ludicrous.

fd - There is a world of difference between law firms "defending an investigation", which implies any criminal case, as you put it, and what we are talking about here, which is defending a majo federal corruption investigation. Former US Attorneys are indeed a marketable commodity, but they are certainly not the be all and end all you describe; and certainly have never been in the inexplicable stratosphere that Yang's offer displayed. Your numbered statements are nonsense. 1) It is, in fact, quite easy and quite normal for quality criminal defense attorneys in private practice to get every bit of the "courtroom experience" as prosecutors. 2) "Rich people" want experienced, successful and proven defense lawyers that have the ability, reputation and moxie to fight the government head on; they don't care how those skills are acquired. Quite frankly, former prosecutors are often at a disadvantage for some time when they switch from the public sector to private criminal defense because they don't have experience operating without the benefits, powers and presumptions that come from having the government behind you. Your unsupported stratements may, or may not, be made in sincere good faith; but they clearly don't come from a person with any experience in the trenches of criminal trial law.

bmaz: i do happen to be a lawyer and every big firm i have ever heard of or worked at has had lots of former u.s. attorneys on staff, and most of what they do is white collar criminal defense. i have also witnessed firms going after former u.s. attorneys, including with monetary bonuses. so you know, have fun with your conspiracy theories, i just happen to think these speculations are ludicrous.

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