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While former Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld lawyer Jeffrey Wertkin awaits his fate after his arrest for trying to sell a sealed whistleblower suit for $300,000, let’s take a moment to revisit some prominent attorneys who made a mess of things.

Jonathan Bristol

Jonathan Bristol.

Ex-Winston & Strawn partner in New York who pleaded guilty in 2011 to conspiracy for helping former money manager Kenneth Starr launder $19 million stolen from celebrity clients, who included Lauren Bacall, Neil Simon and Uma Thurman.



Paul Daugerdas

Paul M. Daugerdas.

Former partner at Jenkens & Gilchrist in Chicago who in 2014 was sentenced to 15 years in prison for, among other things, conspiring to defraud the IRS and evade taxes through a variety of illegal shelters.





Marc Dreier

Marc Dreier.

Founder of Dreier LLP in New York who was sentenced in 2009 to 20 years in federal prison for investment fraud through a Ponzi scheme. He was former co-lead of litigation in the New York office of Fulbright & Jaworski.





Bill Lerach

William Lerach.

Former plaintiffs lawyer in California sentenced in 2008 to two years in prison after admitting he concealed illegal payments to lead plaintiffs in securities class actions.



Scott Rothstein

Scott Rothstein.

Former managing shareholder of now-defunct Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler in Florida who in 2010 received a 50-year sentence for running a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme. As authorities were closing in in 2009, he fled with a duffel bag full of cash to Morocco but returned a few weeks later and cooperated with investigators.


Richard “Dickie” Scruggs

Richard Dickie Scruggs.

Ex-trial lawyer representing plaintiffs in asbestos, tobacco and Hurricane Katrina insurance cases who served six years in prison for conspiring to bribe judges. Scruggs is the brother-in-law of former U.S. Majority Leader Trent Lott.





David Tamman

David Tamman

Convicted in 2012 for his role in a Ponzi scheme that cheated investors out of as much as $20 million. He’d been fired from Nixon Peabody and Greenberg Traurig.




Melvyn Weiss

Melvyn Weiss.

Co-founder of Milberg Weiss and former partner of Bill Lerach who was sentenced in 2008 to 30 months’ incarceration for paying kickbacks to plaintiffs.