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WASHINGTON � David Kettel, an experienced civil trial lawyer who also spent six years prosecuting criminal cases in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles has joined Washington-based Venable LLP as a partner in the firm’s Los Angeles office. Kettel will add to Venable’s West Coast securities, white collar defense, and internal investigations practice � while working on national white collar matters alongside his East Coast counterparts. As an assistant U.S. attorney in the Central District of California and a member of the organized crime drug enforcement task force, Kettel developed experience in the areas of racketeering enterprises, money laundering and asset forfeiture.  He was one of the federal prosecutors in an ongoing criminal racketeering case against George Torres, founder of the Numero Uno supermarket chain and one of the largest property owners in Southern California. He has investigated and prosecuted cases as diverse as bank and bankruptcy fraud, bulk cash smuggling, narcotics trafficking (including “doctor diversion” cases), as well as illegal alien smuggling, child pornography, and identity theft.  Kettel and another prosecutor handled the criminal prosecution of Edilberto Datan, who went to the Philippines to engage in illicit sexual conduct with minors and is now serving a 17-year sentence in federal prison.  This was one of the first cases in which a U.S. citizen was prosecuted for traveling abroad to have sex with a minor. Fifteen years into his career, he decided to become a federal prosecutor. ”In addition to its extremely diverse practice and outstanding client base, Venable clearly places a high value on public service that was critical in my decision to come to the firm,” said Kettel. Kettel’s arrival brings the total number of former AUSAs in the firm to nine, not including Special AUSA’s from the District of Columbia, the Central District of California and the District of Virginia.  

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