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The deal that Abbe David Lowell negotiated for lobbyist Jack Abramoff could be seen as a full-employment act for D.C.’s white-collar criminal defense bar. In January, Abramoff pleaded guilty to conspiracy to bribe public officials, tax evasion, and mail fraud. He agreed to provide evidence against politicians, other public officials, and other lobbyists. Speculation is that Abramoff’s deal could yield indictments against a dozen sitting members of Congress and their aides. And, as prosecutors probe further, scores of law firms are likely to find work in this mega-scandal. But it’s his ability to help a client in the hot seat, not improve the fortunes of others, that makes Lowell, a partner in the D.C. office of Chadbourne & Parke, among the best in his profession. Also, apparently, one of the busiest. Last December, Lowell, 53, shuttled between courthouses in New York and Washington, on more than one occasion making appearances for different clients on the same day. For instance, he says, he represented Sean “P. Diddy” Combs in Washington on a Federal Election Commission complaint, then flew to New York to meet with prosecutors on a grand jury investigation, and then jetted to Germany where he represents Erich Jonschel of Daimler-Chrysler in an investigation alleging Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations. Lowell has an established reputation for dealing with ethics and public corruption investigations. He has represented more than a dozen members of Congress on ethics matters � including former Speaker of the House Jim Wright (D-Texas), in a DOJ investigation in which no charges were filed, and Rep. Harold Ford (D-Tenn.), who was acquitted on all counts at trial. And in certainly one of the biggest ethics case of recent years, Lowell served as chief investigative counsel to the Democratic House minority for the impeachment proceedings against President Bill Clinton. Lowell also has taken his political specialty into the more common prosecutorial realm. He once advised the scandal-plagued former Sen. Robert Torricelli (D-N.J.). More recently, on behalf of then-Rep. Gary Condit (D-Calif.), he put on a full-court media press during the search for the missing former Condit intern Chandra Levy. More quietly, Lowell resolved legal difficulties for Aliza Waksal, who was caught up in the securities case against her father, ImClone chief executive Samuel Waksal. Now Lowell has been retained in an effort to win a reduced sentence for the father. And Lowell has been advising telecommunications baron Walter Anderson, who has been charged with dodging taxes on $450 million in personal income. The case has been called the largest personal tax-fraud case in U.S. history. This past summer, Nashville attorney James Neal served as co-counsel with Lowell in defending Biloxi, Miss., attorney Paul Minor on judicial bribery charges. While the jury deadlocked, a new indictment has been filed. Lowell says he’s remaining with this one for the duration. Neal, who earned his bragging rights three decades ago as the Watergate chief trial counsel, was so impressed with Lowell’s work in that first trial that he recalls turning to him and telling him: “I’ve always had a pretty high opinion of myself, and I think you’re about as good as I was at your age.”

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