Peter H. White is co-chair of the Litigation Group and a member of the firm’s Executive Committee. He concentrates his practice on representing corporations and executives in criminal and related civil and administrative matters, including grand jury investigations, internal investigations, SEC enforcement proceedings, False Claims Act and qui tam lawsuits, and shareholder class actions. Pete has litigated disputes involving accounting and securities fraud, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations, government program fraud, false claims and statements, antitrust violations, public corruption, tax evasion, insider trading, environmental violations and other claims. A former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia and the District of Columbia, Pete has served as lead counsel in over 80 federal and local jury trials and many more bench trials. For nearly two decades, Pete has been lead trial counsel for individuals charged with federal fraud charges in public corruption, government programs and public company accounting. He has prevailed on over 95 percent of all charges that have gone to trial, and in three of his last four trials, all fraud charges have resulted in dismissal or acquittal. In 2015, he represented an individual charged with 60 federal fraud felony counts. The defendant was acquitted of all charges by the jury.
Pete is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. A recipient of the Department of Justice Director’s Award for Superior Performance as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, he has performed with comparable skill as a private practitioner. Pete has been recognized as a leading litigator by The Best Lawyers in America (corporate compliance law, criminal defense: white collar, and litigation-securities), Benchmark Litigation: The Definitive Guide to America’s Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys, Chambers USA, Ethisphere: Attorneys Who Matter, The Legal 500 US, Washington DC Super Lawyers, Washingtonian’s “Washington’s Top Lawyers” (criminal defense, white collar) and The Washington Post (“Their Own Defense,” June 18, 2007). Pete was featured in “Trial Pros: Schulte’s Peter White,” published by Law360, and co-authored the “Civil and Criminal Enforcement” chapter of the Insider Trading Law and Compliance Answer Book (Practising Law Institute). He has spoken widely on insider trading, securities enforcement and related civil litigation, and FCPA enforcement. Most recently, the Litigation Group, co-chaired by Pete, won Law360’s Asset Management Practice Group of the year for its representations of leading private investment funds.
Lead trial and appellate counsel for physician charged criminally with health care fraud, aggravated identity theft and obstruction of justice. Acquitted on all counts during five-week jury trial in federal court in Alexandria, Va. (2015).
Lead trial counsel for former general counsel of insurance company in major DOJ Public Integrity Section prosecution. Acquittal on all counts after jury trial. U.S. v. Beardall, 4:08-cr-00212-DCB (D. Az.) (2010).
Lead trial counsel for chief operating officer of the largest NYSE specialist firm, defeating charges of securities fraud brought by the SEC after trial. Designated lead counsel for all 12 defendants at trial. In the Matter of Finnerty, Admin. Proc. No. 3-11893 (2009).
Lead trial and appellate counsel for chief marketing officer of U.S. Foodservice charged criminally and civilly with securities and accounting fraud in the S.D.N.Y. All convictions reversed, U.S. v. Kaiser, 2010 WL 2607140 (2nd Cir., July 1, 2010).
Lead trial counsel for chief financial officer of Citigroup mutual funds complex in DOJ investigation and SEC and civil class action litigation, including award of summary judgment in SEC case. SEC v. Daidone, 476 F.Supp.2d 374 (S.D.N.Y. 2007); In re Smith Barney Fund Transfer Agent Litig., No. 05 Civ. 7583, 2007 WL 2809600 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 26, 2007), aff’d in part, vacated in part, 595 F.3d 86 (2d Cir. 2010).
Lead trial counsel to aerospace and defense company in an ERISA class action claiming more than $1 billion in damages. Settled for less than 5 percent of damages plaintiffs had sought. Abbott v. Lockheed Martin Corp., Case No. 06-cv-0701-MJR (S.D. Ill. April 16, 2015).
Lead counsel for government contractor involved in providing security for diplomats overseas, including conduct of internal investigations, responding to grand jury subpoenas, negotiations with multiple government agencies, and defense of civil lawsuits. Brady v. Xe Services, et al, Civil Action No. 5:09-CV-00449-BO (EDNC); In re Xe Services Alien Tort Claims Act Litigation, No. 1:09-cv-615, et al (EDVA 2009); U.S. v. Slough, et al, 677 F. Supp. 2d 112 (D.D.C. 2009).
Lead trial counsel for publicly traded company investigated for government contract fraud in sales to GSA, including conduct of internal investigation, defense of criminal investigation, settlement of False Claims Act lawsuit, and successful defense, through jury verdict, of related contractor/subcontractor suit. C&E Services v. Ashland, 1:2003cv01857 (D.D.C.).
Independent Examiner for European banks that are the targets of a major DOJ investigation.
Lead counsel for chief financial officer of publicly traded insurance company in SEC/DOJ accounting fraud investigation.
Counsel for Big Four firm in DOJ criminal investigation involving a large pharmaceutical audit claim.
General counsel of major defense contractor in DOJ investigation of export control violations.
Senior executives of defense contractors in multiple criminal bid-rigging investigations.
Executives of multiple companies involved in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigations.
Publicly traded medical device manufacturer in investigation of export control violations by the SEC, the DOJ and the Departments of Commerce and Treasury.
Major pulp and paper manufacturer investigated for potential violations of the Clean Air Act.
Large construction company in internal investigation in allegations of government contracts price-fixing.
Multiple student loan fraud investigations, including representation of executives and corporate entities against False Claims Act and government program fraud charges.
Senior executives of international bank and major hedge fund in connection with tax shelter investigations in the S.D.N.Y. and the W.D. Wash.
Managing directors of business development company in parallel SEC and DOJ investigations.
Senior executives of publicly traded company in investigation of alleged criminal immigration violations.
Executives involved in DOJ and SEC investigations of finite reinsurance contracts.
“Second Circuit, in Split Decision, Overrules Limitation on Insider Trading Liability Established in U.S. v. Newman,” SRZ Alert, Aug. 28, 2017 (co-author); republished in The Hedge Fund Journal, September 2017
“‘Spoofing’ Conviction Upheld: Implications for Private Fund Managers and Algorithmic Traders,” SRZ Alert, Aug. 11, 2017 (co-author)
“Sanctions Update: Russia, Iran, North Korea and Venezuela,” SRZ Alert, Aug. 2, 2017 (co-author); republished in The Hedge Fund Journal, August 2017
“Supreme Court: SEC Disgorgement Claims Are Subject to Five-Year Statute of Limitations,” SRZ Alert, June 6, 2017 (co-author); republished in The Hedge Fund Journal, June 2017
“Trial Pros: Schulte’s Peter White,” Law360, June 10, 2016 (profile)
“US Eases Sanctions on Burma,” SRZ Alert, May 31, 2016 (co-author)
“OFAC and BIS Amend Cuba Sanctions Regulations,” SRZ Alert, Feb. 1, 2016 (co-author)
“‘Implementation Day’ Marks Rollback of Significant Nuclear-Related Sanctions on Iran,” SRZ Alert, Jan. 20, 2016 (co-author); republished in Business Crimes Bulletin, June 2016
“Civil and Criminal Enforcement,” Insider Trading Law and Compliance Answer Book (Practising Law Institute), 2011-2018 (co-author)
“BHP Billiton Settles with SEC for $25 Million for Providing Foreign Officials with Luxury Travel to Olympics,” SRZ Alert, May 21, 2015 (co-author)
“PayPal Settlement Highlights OFAC Risks for Money Services Businesses,” SRZ Alert, March 27, 2015 (co-author)
“Sanctions Update: Crimea,” SRZ Alert, Feb. 5, 2015 (co-author); republished in Westlaw Journal – Securities Litigation & Regulation, March 5, 2015
“Newman’s Aftermath: District Court Vacates Four Insider Trading Guilty Pleas; Government Seeks Rehearing in Second Circuit,” SRZ Alert, Jan. 27, 2015 (co-author); republished in The Hedge Fund Journal, February/March 2015
SRZ Insider Trading Developments Newsletter, Summer 2014 (contributor)
“But Which State-Owned Entities Are Not Instrumentalities?” Law360, May 23, 2014 (co-author)
“Escalating U.S.–Russia Tensions Lead to New Sanctions, Heightened AML Risks,” SRZ Alert, April 4, 2014 (co-author)
“Funds Face New Sanctions, AML Risks in Wake of Escalating U.S.–Russia Tensions,” SRZ Alert, April 4, 2014 (co-author)
“SEC Enforcement Division Increases the Pace of Rule 105 Investigations,” SRZ Alert, June 28, 2013 (co-author)
“New FCPA Guidance Highlights Importance of Effective Compliance Procedures,” SRZ Alert, Nov. 19, 2012 (co-author)
SRZ Insider Trading Developments Newsletter, Summer 2012 (co-author)
“Recent FCPA Developments Highlight Risk of Individual Liability,” Financial Fraud Law Report, March 2012 (co-author)
“Government Launches FCPA Inquiry into Investments by Sovereign Wealth Funds in U.S. Banks and Private Equity Firms,” Financial Fraud Law Report, July/August 2011 (co-author)
“Five Years is Enough for a Civil Penalty Assessment: No ‘Discovery of Violation’ Rule for the SEC under 28 USC. §2642,” Securities Regulation & Law Report, April 23, 2007
“Let’s Make a Deal: Negotiating and Defending Immunity for Targets and Subjects,” The Journal of the ABA Section of Litigation, Fall 2002; reprinted in Constitutional Criminal Procedure, 3d. ed. (Foundation Press), 2007; 4th ed. (Foundation Press), 2010
“The Virginia Birth-Related Neurological Injury Compensation Act: Tort Reform for an Endangered Specialty,” Virginia Law Review, 1988
“Special Considerations for Financial Institutions, Hedge Fund and Private Equity Firms: New, Evolving Corruption Risk Factors to Flag Now,” ACI 20th New York Conference on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, New York, May 2018
“Regulatory Outlook,” SRZ 27th Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, New York, January 2018
“Defending the Gatekeeper: When In-House Counsel and Compliance Professionals are Investigated,” SRZ Storming the Gatekeepers: When Compliance Officers and In-House Lawyers are at Risk 2017, September 2017
DOJ & FBI Presentation on Yahoo Data Breach, August 2017
SRZ Insider’s Guide to Government Investigations: Winning Strategies for Investment Funds, June 2017
“Question and Answer Session with Judges and Fellows,” American College of Trial Lawyers Trial Techniques, June 2017
SRZ Insider’s Guide to Government Investigations: Winning Strategies for Investment Funds, April 2017
“Dealing with Sovereign Wealth Funds and Other Foreign Investors: Unique and Heightened FCPA Considerations Affecting Your Business,” ACI 19th Annual New York Conference on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, April 2017
“Defending Medical Necessity Cases,” ABA 31st Annual National Institute on White Collar Crime, March 2017
“Trading Compliance,” SRZ 26th Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2017
“Insider Trading and Dealing with Reputational and Operational Risk,” HFMWeek US Operational Leaders Summit, June 2014
“Securities Enforcement and Related Civil Litigation,” SRZ 23rd Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2014
“FCPA Issues for Fund Managers,” SRZ 22nd Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2013
“The Foreign Corrupt Practice Act: How Funds Can Mitigate Risks,” SRZ Investment Management Hot Topics, May 2012
“Retaining Counsel, the Search, and Investigating the Case” and “Handling the Search,” National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers White Collar Criminal Defense College, March 2012
“Recent Developments in US Insider Trading Law and FCPA Enforcement,” SRZ Webinar, February 2012
“Insider Trading: Latest Insights” and “Regulatory and Compliance,” SRZ 21st Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2012
“Best Practices to Prevent Insider Trading,” MFA Regulatory Compliance, November 2011
“Update on UK and US Insider Trading,” SRZ Webinar, November 2011
“AML, FCPA and OFAC: The Intersection of Three Key Risk Areas,” SRZ 20th Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2011
“Regulatory Enforcement,” SRZ 19th Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2010
“Criminal Accountability for Civilians in the Battle Space: Applying Available Civil Suit Defenses,” ABA Continuing Legal Education, March 2009
“International Corporate Transgressions: A Hypothetical,” DRI Conference, January 2009
“Defining the Boundaries: The Use of Private Contractors in Contingency Operations,” American Bar Association Annual Meeting, August 2008
“Internal Investigations 2007: Legal, Ethical & Strategic Issues,” Practicing Law Institute Seminar, June 2007
“Anti-Terrorism Update,” Virginia State Bar Annual Meeting, July 2002
- Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers
- Department of Justice Director’s Award
- Law360 2014 White Collar Editorial Advisory Board
- Listed as a leading litigator in many publications, including:
- Benchmark Litigation: The Definitive Guide to America’s Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys
- The Best Lawyers in America (corporate compliance law, criminal defense: white collar, and litigation-securities)
- Chambers USA
- Ethisphere: Attorneys Who Matter
- The Legal 500 US
- Washington DC Super Lawyers
- Washingtonian’s “Washington’s Top Lawyers” (criminal defense, white collar)
- The Washington Post (“Their Own Defense,” June 18, 2007)
- Who's Who Legal: Business Crime Defence
- Assistant U.S. Attorney, 1992-1999
- District of Columbia, 1992-1997
- Eastern District of Virginia, 1997-1999
- Law Clerk to Hon. Richard L. Williams, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Virginia, 1989-1990