Dan Garner* Following our earlier reports about the wave of departures from Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht, two key partners have now also left the beleagued firm, touted once as “the fastest growing law firm in the world”.
The latest refugees are Eric Creizman Melissa Madrigal, (pictured) both white collar crime specialists, and who Law.com report are going to Armstrong Teasdale. They leave at the end of January and commence at the new firm on 10 February, according to the New York Law Journal report.
Pierce Bainbridge have been hemorrhaging staff, including senior partners, for several months, as we have reported. In three months towards the end of last year the firm lost six partners.
Given his usual fighting talk, imbued with a heavy military braggadocio that includes references to his firm’s ‘Seals’, Pierce said at the time of the departures that he respected the lawyers who left, but those who stay have to have “not only thick skin but skin made of kevlar combined with titanium.”
More recently, LawFuel reported on the PB ‘Carousel’ with at least 14 attorneys, including seven partners, who had left the firm.
That article also looked at the rocky road faced by the firm in respect of its clients as well.
Pierce Bainbridge has handled work for a number of high profile clients apart from Rudy Giuliani and including attorney Michael Avenatti and in battles against both Google and Facebook.
However the departure of Creizman in particular will be a major blow to the firm, particularly given the firm’s representation of Trump personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, now featuring in the current Trump impeachment hearing. But Creizman also has a strong reputation and practice in New York in particular and signals problems for PB’s plans for East Coast, let alone world legal domination.
John Pierce had hoped to convince the two to remain with the firm, the Law.com report said, but they made their decision to go. Pierce said that he looked “forward to welcoming them back with open arms someday soon. Between now and then, we wish them the very best and will be their biggest fans and supporters.”
Creizman confirmed to Law.com that the Giuliani case would probably stay with Pierce Bainbridge. Robert Costello, a former federal prosecutor and a lawyer at Davidoff Hutcher & Citron who has known Giuliani for decades, has also been part of the legal team representing Giuliani.
Meanwhile, the range war raging between Pierce Bainbridge and former partner Don Lewis also continues with Lewis suing the firm accusing Pierce and others of serious claims of financial and other misconduct and for firing him on a made-up pretense in response to his efforts to expose malpractice allegedly undertaken by Pierce and others.
Lewis and Pierce are both Harvard law graduates and the battle has attracted widespread publicity given its venom and the seriousness of the allegations.
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