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Blackberry Deal = $200M Payout To Wiley When NTP Inc. inked its $612.5 million settlement with Research in Motion Ltd. on March 3, lawyers at Wiley Rein & Fielding let out a collective sigh of relief. • Ante Up: More Firms Raise Associates Pay Shortly after most D.C. firms raised starting pay for first-year associates to $135,000 last month, a second round of salary bidding broke out. • In The Running: Candidates Named for President-Elect of D.C. Bar Paul Smith, managing partner of Jenner & Block’s D.C. office, and Melvin White, a civil litigation partner at McDermott Will & Emery, are candidates for president-elect of the D.C. Bar, which has 59,000 active members. • On The Horn: Firms Prepare for AT&T-BellSouth Merger With the bulked up AT&T’s decision to merge with BellSouth Corp., D.C firms are girding for the regulators. • Time Is Money: Members of Biker Gang Sue Federal Government They spent years behind bars for a murder they didn’t commit. Now they’re suing the federal government for withholding evidence that would have proven their innocence. • Blaming The Lawyer: Suit in Partnership Case Thrown Out Susan Fontana wanted out. Her business partner, Karyne Messina, seemed inexplicably hard to deal with. But the two held equal ownership in the corporation Totally Italian.com Inc. So in 2002, Fontana hired Daniel Krakower of Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker to write a letter outlining her complaints in hopes of finding a way to end their joint business venture. • Going Wireless?: Court Could Offer Free Wireless Internet Access The U.S. District Court in D.C. might soon be at the forefront of the information age compared to other courthouses nationwide.
ONLINE EXTRASCuster Loses Battle: Company Found Guilty of Defrauding Government There were insults, accusations of theft, and even a dirty joke, but in the end a jury found last week that Iraq contractor Custer Battles had defrauded the government, and it ordered the company to pay more than $10 million in fines. • Keeping Secrets: Lobbies Take Complaints to Capitol Hill Lobbies upset with Justice Department investigation tactics took their long-standing disgruntlement to Capitol Hill on March 7, arguing that government agencies are overstepping boundaries in their efforts to blunt white-collar crime. • In the Firms: Movement Amongst the Players Miller & Chevalier’s tax practice took a hit this week when partners Alex Zakupowsky and James Atkinson jumped to Winston & Strawn’s four-lawyer Washington tax practice. Plus more… • What Witness?: New Trial Ordered for Sykes The D.C. Court of Appeals has ordered a new trial for a man who was convicted of killing the son of a Bulgarian diplomat in 1997. • Ears Burning: New Procedures for Punishing Lawyers on the Table A D.C. Bar committee has recommended some dramatic changes in the way lawyers are disciplined in the District.

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