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David S. Krakoff
Extremely thoughtful and imaginative in developing investigation and trial strategy ... one of the best lawyers in town. Chambers USA

Biography

David Krakoff has established himself over the last 30 years as one of the nation’s leading trial lawyers and counselors for high-stakes criminal and complex civil litigation. Resident in Buckley Sandler’s Washington, DC office, Mr. Krakoff represents corporations and executives in all aspects of criminal, civil, and parallel enforcement matters with strategic advice, investigation, and advocacy before government agencies and trials.

Mr. Krakoff’s clients are investigated and prosecuted by the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Treasury Department, and other domestic and foreign enforcement agencies. They face prosecution for potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), and the laws regulating securities enforcement, accounting fraud, public corruption, antitrust, tax health care, export control, False Claims Act (FCA), trade secrets, and the environment. In addition, his clients are often involved in high-stakes shareholder class action litigation. Mr. Krakoff has had primary trial responsibility in more than 50 cases.

Some of his noteworthy clients include:

  • 2014-Present: Universal Entertainment Corp., a large Japanese gaming machine manufacturer, its subsidiary, Aruze USA, Inc., and CEO in FCPA-related litigation brought by Wynn Resorts Ltd., and in related parallel domestic and foreign enforcement actions. The case involves one of the first examples of a private party alleging FCPA violations as a method to gain the upper hand in a battle for corporate control
     
  • 2012-2014: CEO/CFO of Noble Corporation, an oilfield services company, in an SEC enforcement action litigated in the United States District Court for Southern District of Texas. Following full discovery, the SEC voluntarily dropped six of seven claims and entered a favorable consent decree just before trial commenced
     
  • 2010-2012: Owner and General Manager of a military arms company in DOJ’s largest FCPA prosecution of individuals. The prosecution involved the first sting operation in an FCPA case using video and wire surveillance and an undercover informant and agents. After a four-month trial in 2011-2012 ending in a hung jury, the court granted the DOJ's motion to dismiss all charges
     
  • 2004-2012: Former Senior Vice President and Controller of Fannie Mae in parallel DOJ and SEC investigations and in related shareholder litigation. The matter involved alleged accounting errors reported in 2004 by the company’s regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which resulted in a $6 billion restatement. Summary judgment and dismissal were granted in the securities fraud class action after full discovery over eight years completely exonerating Mr. Krakoff’s client of the highly-publicized allegations
     
  • 2005-2009: Senior Vice President of W.R. Grace in a prosecution on charges of conspiracy to violate the Clean Air Act through the knowing endangerment of the townspeople of Libby, Montana by the alleged release of asbestos contaminating their air and homes. This was the DOJ’s largest and longest environmental crimes prosecution, which garnered national press attention due to the health impact on 300 residents of Libby. The prosecution was initiated nearly 40 years after the alleged conduct concluded. The three month trial ended in an acquittal on all counts

Mr. Krakoff is a recognized leader in the field of white collar and complex litigation. He has been ranked as a leading Litigation lawyer by Chambers USA (2006-2017), which described him as "extremely thoughtful and imaginative in developing investigation and trial strategy. He is immensely experienced." Other accolades include: Legal 500 (2012, 2015-2017), which called him a "great lawyer and great guy." In 2015 he was named a Law360 Trial Ace and a National Law Journal White Collar Trailblazer.

In addition to his experience in private practice, Mr. Krakoff served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia for 10 years.

Mr. Krakoff received his J.D. from Antioch School of Law and his A.B. from Dartmouth College.

Extremely thoughtful and imaginative in developing investigation and trial strategy ... one of the best lawyers in town. Chambers USA

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Awards and Recognitions

Awards & Recognitions

  • Legal 500 2017: Recognized in the Corporate Investigations and White Collar Criminal Defense practice area
  • Chambers USA 2017: Band 1, DC Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations; Band 3, FCPA
  • Best Lawyers 2017: Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense - White-Collar, Litigation - Banking and Finance, Litigation - Securities
  • Legal 500 2016: Recognized in the Litigation - White Collar Criminal Defense practice area
  • Chambers USA 2016: Band 1, DC Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations; Band 3, FCPA
  • Who's Who Legal: Business Crime Defence 2016
  • Super Lawyers 2016: Criminal Defense: White Collar, Business Litigation
  • Chambers USA 2015: Band 1, DC Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations; Band 4, FCPA
  • Legal 500 2015: Recognized in the Litigation - White Collar Criminal Defense practice area
  • Best Lawyers 2016: Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense - White Collar, Litigation - Banking and Finance, Litigation - Securities
  • National Law Journal White Collar Trailblazer 2015
  • Law360 Trial Ace 2015
  • Washingtonian Top Lawyer, Criminal Defense (2007, 2013, 2015)
  • Who's Who Legal: Compendium Edition
  • Who's Who Legal: Business Crime Defence 2015
  • Super Lawyers 2015: Criminal Defense: White Collar, Business Litigation
  • Best Lawyers 2015: Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense - White Collar, Litigation - Banking and Finance, Litigation - Securities
  • Who's Who Legal 2015 - Compendium Edition
  • Who's Who Legal: Business Crime Defence 2014
  • Chambers USA 2010-2014: Band 2, DC Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations
  • Legal 500 2014: Recognized in the Litigation - White Collar Criminal Defense practice area
  • Super Lawyers 2014: Criminal Defense (White Collar), Business Litigation
  • Best Lawyers 2014: Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense - White Collar, Litigation - Banking and Finance, Litigation - Securities
  • Super Lawyers 2013: Criminal Defense (White Collar), Business Litigation
  • Best Lawyers 2013: Banking and Finance Law, Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense - White Collar, Securities/Capital Markets Law
  • Legal 500 2012: Recognized in the Litigation - White Collar Criminal Defense practice area
  • Super Lawyers 2012: Criminal Defense (White Collar), Business Litigation
  • Best Lawyers 2012: Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense - White Collar, Litigation - Banking and Finance, Litigation - Securities
  • The International Who's Who of Business Crime Defense Lawyers 2012-2013
  • The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers 2012-2013
  • Super Lawyers 2011, Criminal Defense: White Collar Attorney
  • Best Lawyers 2011: Commercial Litigation and White Collar Criminal Defense
  • Best Lawyers in Washington 2006-2013

Education

  • J.D., Antioch School of Law, 1975
  • A.B., Dartmouth College, 1971

Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Government Service

    • Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Columbia

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