BUSINESS LITIGATION



A substantial part of the firm's practice involves business and commercial litigation. The firm has experience representing clients in a wide range of industries, including manufacturing, health care, banking, energy, pharmaceutical, defense and education. In addition to conventional contractual disputes, the firm has handled false claims, RICO, environmental, intellectual property, employment and construction litigation. It has defended parties to shareholder derivative and securities class action lawsuits alleging oppression of minority shareholders, illegal backdating of stock options, accounting fraud and other breaches of fiduciary duties. Some of the shareholder litigation has arisen in the context of estate and trust controversies. In light of its extensive criminal law experience, the firm also routinely handles parallel civil and criminal litigation arising out of the same business context. The firm has been recognized in U.S. News & World Report's annual rankings of the Best Law Firms in America as a First Tier St. Louis law firm in the area of "Commercial Litigation."

REPRESENTATIVE MATTERS



DERIVATIVE CLAIMS/SHAREHOLDER CLASS ACTIONS

  • Represented majority shareholders of bank holding company in defense of claims of oppression of minority shareholders and for corporate dissolution

  • Represented CFO of Fortune 500 cable television company in defense of class action proceedings alleging accounting fraud

  • Represented defense contractor in shareholder derivative and class action lawsuits arising out of backdating of stock options

ENVIRONMENTAL

  • Represented electrical utility in litigation with the State of Missouri and with private parties arising out of the collapse of the 1.4 billion gallon mountaintop reservoir at the Taum Sauk Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Power Plant, which resulted in the largest environmental case in Missouri history

  • Represented international energy company in successful defense of class action alleging PCB contamination along multi-state natural gas pipeline

  • Represented public utility in defense of whistleblower claims by independent contractor alleging environmental violations

  • Represented parties in litigation involving allocation of environmental cleanup costs


FALSE CLAIMS & RICO

  • Obtained summary judgment for major university in multimillion dollar qui tam action alleging Medicare fraud relating to surgical practices of medical school faculty

  • Represented individuals and entities in defense of civil racketeering allegations related to multi-level marketing, insurance premium finance, real estate development, legal services and trucking industries


INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

  • Represented parties to claims of patent infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets, including an alleged international scheme to obtain proprietary chemical plant technology


FIDUCIARY LITIGATION

  • Represented trustees controlling majority interest in $400 million private corporation against claims of breach of fiduciary duty and oppression of minority shareholders

  • Represented trustees in defense of breach of fiduciary duty claims involving trusts that controlled a majority interest in publicly-traded company with over $600 million in annual sales

  • Represented primary beneficiary in action for damages and to set aside a trust allegedly induced by fraud and undue influence.