DALLAS, Sept. 14 2004 LAWFUEL – Best for law firms news, law news, legal research, attorney news Michael J. Uhl, an Assistant United
States Attorney, best-known for gaining convictions against Republic of Texas
separatist Richard McLaren and former Dallas City Councilman Al Lipscomb, is
leaving government service to enter private practice.
Mr. Uhl will be joining a new criminal defense law firm, Fitzpatrick
Hagood Smith & Uhl. The Dallas-based firm will focus on representing business
professionals and companies involved in white collar criminal investigations
as witnesses, targets or defendants.
“This is a great opportunity for me to work with some of the best criminal
trial lawyers in Texas,” says Mr. Uhl. “Together, we think we can create a
one-of-a-kind law firm capable of handling any kind of criminal case, no
matter how large or complex.”
Uhl, one of the nation’s best-known Assistant U.S. Attorneys, was named
Federal Prosecutor of the Year by the Dallas Crime Commission in 1999. He has
served at the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Northern District of Texas since
1990 and has risen through the ranks to lead the agency’s Major Fraud and
Public Corruption Section.
In 1998, Uhl prosecuted Richard McLaren who was convicted of attempting to
distribute $1.8 billion in bogus checks. He received a 12-year federal prison
sentence. McLaren and his Republic of Texas followers asserted that Texas
should be an independent nation because they claimed that the state was
improperly annexed by the United States.
In 2000, in a highly visible public corruption trial, Uhl prosecuted
longtime Dallas City Councilman Al Lipscomb. Lipscomb was sentenced to 41
months of house arrest following his bribery conviction. After 27 months, the
conviction was overturned by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals because justices
found that the district judge had abused his discretion by moving the trial to
Amarillo over the defense’s objections.
During his 14 years as a federal prosecutor, Uhl prosecuted cases
involving health care fraud, tax fraud, mail/wire fraud and investment fraud.
He also coordinated investigations into allegations of voter fraud and drug
trafficking. He is a recognized authority on corporate compliance issues.
He’s investigated and prosecuted some of our most difficult, sensitive and
complex cases in the fraud and public corruption area,” says Richard Roper,
U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. “He’s an outstanding
courtroom lawyer and I’m sure he’ll be very successful in private practice.
We’ll miss him very much.” Mr. Uhl will remain at the U.S. Attorney’s office
The other founding members of Fitzpatrick Hagood Smith & Uhl are:
— Knox Fitzpatrick: Former General Counsel to the Governor of Texas,
and Supervising Chief Felony Prosecutor under legendary District
Attorney Henry Wade. Texas Monthly Super Lawyer.
— Dan Hagood: Special Prosecutor, fake drugs investigation, and former
Supervising Chief Felony Prosecutor in the Dallas County DA’s office.
Texas Monthly Super Lawyer.
— Robert R. Smith: Former Assistant U.S. Attorney, Dallas County
Assistant District Attorney and Felony Chief Prosecutor. Texas
Monthly Super Lawyer.