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It was a strong year at Steptoe & Johnson, where both profits per partner and revenue per lawyer increased in 2002. Steptoe’s counter-cyclical strengths—litigation, bankruptcy, and white collar crime—continued to stand the firm in good stead during the economic downturn, enabling Steptoe partners to take home an extra $65,000 last year—a 12 percent jump over 2001. “People feel optimistic and good about what we’re doing,” says firm chairman J.A. “Lon” Bouknight Jr. “We’re in very good shape.” Led by partner Reid Weingarten, the firm’s white collar group was in hot demand in a year when corporate scandals remained front-page news. Weingarten and team are representing Mark Belnick, the former general counsel of Tyco International Ltd., who was indicted for allegedly falsifying Tyco business records; former WorldCom Inc. CEO Bernard Ebbers; Richard Causey, the one-time chief accounting officer of the Enron Corp. Litigation and international trade were also very active in 2002, says Bouknight. In one notable case, Steptoe litigators are going to bat for the legal profession, representing the American Bar Association in a suit against the Federal Trade Commission to exempt lawyers from the privacy notification provisions of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. Steptoe lawyers are also representing the Motorola Credit Corp. in a $2 billion fraud case against members of the family that run Turkish mobile phone company Telsim Mobil Telekomunikasyon Hizmetleri A.S. In the international trade arena, the firm is in the thick of one of the biggest ongoing disputes, involving Canadian softwood lumber. Steptoe represents the Canadian Lumber Trade Alliance, a key player in the dispute between the United States and Canada over Canadian subsidies of exported lumber.

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