John’s practice focuses on mergers and acquisition litigation, securities class actions, and corporate governance.

A member of the firm’s corporate and securities litigation practice, John’s practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions litigation, securities class actions, derivative suits and corporate governance. He represents public and private companies, private equity firms, investment banks and company executives in complex civil litigation, securities class actions and investigations.

John also advises clients on state government ethics issues, including the Virginia Campaign Finance Reform Act of 2006, Virginia’s Conflict of Interests Acts and lobbying laws.

John has been recognized as “rising star” by Virginia Super Lawyers. He is admitted to practice before the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and the US District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia.

Relevant Experience

  • Mergers and Acquisitions (N.C.): Represented a Fortune 500 energy company and its board of directors in shareholder class actions in state and federal court in connection with a $13 billion merger with another Fortune 500 energy company.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions (Tex.): Successfully defended shareholder lawsuit to enjoin the $2.4 billion merger of Cash America International, Inc. with First Cash Financial Services, Inc.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions (Cal.): Represented a Fortune 100 corporation in shareholder class actions brought in connection with the acquisition of a technology company. The action was dismissed on the pleadings.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions (Del.): Represented a private equity firm in two shareholder class actions brought in connection with the acquisition of a design and manufacturing company.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions (E.D. Va.): Successfully defended lawsuit by seller’s creditor alleging that acquirer of assets was liable for the seller’s debts.
  • Preferred Shareholder Litigation (Md.): Represented a REIT in a class action brought by a preferred shareholder alleging a breach of contract and a breach of fiduciary duty in connection with a merger with another REIT.
  • Fiduciary Duty and Corporate Governance (E.D. Va.): Successfully defended closely held corporation in derivative action challenging executive compensation. Decision affirmed by the Fourth Circuit.
  • Securities Litigation (S.D.N.Y.): Represented a board of directors in a proxy contest with a group of dissident shareholders.
  • Securities Litigation (S.D.N.Y.): Represented a former REIT in action by noteholders alleging various contract and business tort claims in connection with a repurchase of securities.
  • Confidential RMBS Working Group Investigation: Represented an issuer of subprime RMBS in a government investigation relating to disclosures in RMBS offering materials. The matter was terminated without penalty after two years of investigation.
  • Confidential SEC Investigation: Represented an underwriter of municipal bonds in an investigation regarding the accuracy of disclosures in the Official Statement.
  • FDIC Litigation (S.D.W.Va.): Defended a bank chairman against FDIC claims of negligence and a breach of fiduciary duty following the bank’s failure during the financial crisis
  • Arbitration: Successfully defended an energy company over indemnification claims associated with its acquisition of a fuel plant.

Memberships

  • Member, Virginia Bar Association
  • Member, Richmond Bar Association

Awards & Recognition

  • Selected as a Rising Star in Securities Litigation, Virginia Super Lawyers magazine, 2015–2017. A description of the selection methodology can be found on Super Lawyers’ webpage

Insights