The Churn
(Illustration by Paul Dilakian)

Squire Patton Boggs and Ashurst, two growing global legal giants that have recently gone the merger route, both reshuffled overseas alliances this week.

In the Middle East, Squire Patton Boggs saw a 23-lawyer, five-partner team from legacy firm Squire Sanders depart as the newly combined entity absorbs the Saudi Arabian affiliate of Patton Boggs.

The Khalid Al-Thebity Law Firm, the Riyadh-based shop of former Patton Boggs counsel and Saudi managing partner Khalid Al-Thebity, was once associated with the now-defunct Dewey & LeBoeuf before signing on with Patton Boggs in June 2012. As a sign of how lucrative Al-Thebity’s practice is, the liquidating trustee for Dewey’s bankrupt estate hit him with a $13.9 million clawback claim in May. (Foreign firms in Saudi Arabia can only operate through a local affiliate.)

As part of Patton Boggs’ integration with Squire Sanders, the newly combined Am Law 100 firm has chosen to shed its ties to Saudi alliance partner Al-Enezee, a local firm formerly known as El-Khoury & Partners that Squire Sanders forged a relationship with back in October 2012. As a result, partners KHULAIF AL-ENEZEE, ZIAD EL-KHOURY, WISSAM HACHEM, HADI MELKI and ELIE ABOUZEIDAN will leave Squire Patton Boggs, according to U.K. publication Legal Business. The group had offices in Riyadh and Beirut.

Meanwhile, in another part of the world, London-based Ashurst, itself the product of a megamerger last year with leading Australian firm Blake Dawson, continued to expand in the Asia-Pacific region this month by raiding two Am Law 100 firms.

The Asian Lawyer, a sibling publication, reports that Ashurst has added White & Case debt capital markets partner ANN-MARIE SLOT in Hong Kong, along with bringing on O’Melveny & Myers restructuring partner BERTIE MEHIGAN, M&A partner JOEL HOGARTH and energy counsel RATIH NAWANGSARI.

Mehigan will join Ashurst in Hong Kong, while Hogarth will come aboard as a senior legal consultant at the British firm’s Indonesian affiliate in Jakarta, where Nawangsari will also work. Ashurst has also recruited disputes partner DEBBY SULAIMAN in Jakarta from O’Melveny’s local affiliate Tumbuan & Partners. Ashurst is affiliated in Indonesia with Oentoeng Suria & Partners.

In other Churn news …

Akerman, the Florida firm that tweaked its name last year, has hired commercial litigation partner DOUGLAS ALBRITTON in Chicago from Reed Smith, a firm he joined back in 2009 from leading local shop Freeborn & Peters. Albritton handles a variety of litigation matters for corporate clients.

Four years after raiding Venable for its automotive industry chair, Arent Fox has continued to bolster the practice group by hiring partner RUSSELL MCRORY in New York from Robinson Brog Leinwand Greene Genovese & Gluck and partner HALBERT RASMUSSEN in Los Angeles from Manning, Leaver, Bruder & Berberich. Both litigators have represented auto dealerships on a range of legal issues.

Epstein Becker & Green has hired Arnold & Porter associate HANNAH FOX as a health care and life sciences partner in New York. The firm also saw life sciences partner MARK HAMELBURG in Washington, D.C., depart last month to become senior vice president of federal programs for Beltway-based nonprofit America’s Health Insurance Plans.

Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani, which adopted its new name earlier this year, has hired Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker product and professional liability litigation partner CHRISTIAN NOVAY in Chicago. Novay’s civil defense practice predominantly focuses on representing construction, transportation and trucking industry clients.

Hogan Lovells has hired real estate transactions partner ALBERT STEMP in Los Angeles from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, where he was counsel. Stemp represents borrowers, financial institutions, private equity firms, real estate investment trusts and other investors on a variety of real estate transactions.

Tax controversy partner JEFFREY GOLDMAN has left Husch Blackwell in Kansas City, Mo., a firm he joined from Mayer Brown’s Chicago office back in 2012, to return to the Windy City as a partner at Holland & Knight. Goldman advises clients in the auto, insurance, health care, manufacturing and pharmaceutical sectors.

Hunton & Williams has added a real estate pro of its own, hiring finance and development partner ROBERT JOHNSON from Seyfarth Shaw in Los Angeles. Johnson joined Seyfarth in 2008 as part of a nine-lawyer team that defected from Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, an Am Law 100 firm now known as Dentons.

HARRY JOE, a former equity partner at Jackson Lewis in Dallas, has left the national labor and employment firm to open his own immigration law office called The JMO Firm. Texas Lawyer, a sibling publication, caught up with Joe to discuss his reasons for launching his own boutique with two other Lone Star State lawyers.

Jones Day has lured private equity partner MAE SHAN CHONG in Singapore from White & Case, where she became a partner in 2011 after coming aboard from Ashurst, according to The Asian Lawyer. Chong’s practices focuses on advising private equity and corporate clients on cross-border M&A deals and buyouts.

JASON COOK, an IP litigation and patent partner with Alston & Bird in Dallas, has left the firm he joined from his own practice in 2008 to become a partner in the local office of McGuireWoods, which the latter opened earlier this year by poaching six lawyers from Patton Boggs.

McKenna Long & Aldridge has lured private client partner DIANA HASTINGS in San Francisco from her own local shop Armstrong & Hastings, which ceased practicing law earlier this month. The latter’s sole remaining partner Christopher Armstrong will remain at his own solo firm in Tiburon, Calif., but will have a strategic relationship with McKenna Long.

Despite the raid by Ashurst in Asia, O’Melveny is also in the market for new hires. This week the firm brought back former antitrust partner EDWARD “TED” HASSI in Washington, D.C., where he spent the past three years as chief trial counsel for the Federal Trade Commission’s bureau of competition.

Paul Hastings has plucked DLA Piper white-collar litigation and regulatory partner PAUL MONNIN in Atlanta, according to sibling publication the Daily Report. Monnin, a former federal prosecutor who joined DLA in 2008, told the Daily Report that in going to Paul Hastings he was looking for a smaller firm that still had a strong international platform.

Polsinelli, one of the fastest-growing firms in The Am Law 200, has raided Reed Smith for government contracts partner GREGORY JACOBS in Washington, D.C., who brings with him an associate. Jacobs had spent the previous decade at Reed Smith.

Reed Smith has added finance partner VANESSA GAGE in San Francisco from Mayer Brown, where she was an associate, according to sibling publication The Recorder. Also joining Reed Smith are IP partners ROBERT BROWNE and JOHN CULLIS and counsel LAWRENCE “LEE” JAMES in Chicago from leading local firm Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg. (The trio were all partners at their former firm.) The moves come a month after Reed Smith expanded in London by snagging McDermott Will & Emery energy and natural resources partner PRAJAKT SAMANT and Osborne Clarke technology and telecommunications partner ANGUS FINNEGAN.

REENA AGRAWAL SAHNI, a former financial institutions counsel at Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York, has joined Shearman & Sterling’s financial regulatory group as a partner. Sahni specializes in bank regulatory advice, particularly with matters pertaining to the Dodd-Frank Act.

Stinson Leonard Street, an Am Law 200 firm formed via a merger between two midwestern regional shops late last year, has lured Lathrop & Gage litigation partner DOUGLAS DALGLEISH to its ranks in Kansas City, Mo. Dalgleish is a seasoned trial lawyer, having spent nearly 30 years at Lathrop & Gage.

Troutman Sanders has continued its expansion in New York by hiring construction litigation partner AARON ABRAHAM and two associates from Goulston & Storrs, a firm he joined three years ago from local shop Tarter Krinsky & Drogin.

Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease has brought on former federal prosecutor JUSTIN ROBERTS as a white-collar, crisis management and government investigations partner in Cleveland. Roberts has significant securities fraud litigation experience, such as cases involving accounting fraud, insider trading, options backdating, market manipulation, broker self-dealing and matters arising out of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Washington, D.C.’s Wilkinson Barker Knauer has hired Latham & Watkins media and telecommunications partner BRIAN MURRAY in Washington, D.C., where he was promoted to partner in late 2011. Murray is a regulatory compliance expert with a specialty in broadband issues, according to Multichannel News.

The Churn is compiled from law firm releases, announcements and reporting. Please send all announcements and news releases to