Our first runners-up this week are Lisa Blatt, Amy Saharia and their team at Williams & Connolly who got an appellate win upholding a ruling knocking out multidistrict litigation targeting client GlaxoSmithKline. The First Circuit this week declined to revive claims brought on behalf of more than 400 women who claimed GSK failed to warn them that taking the anti-nausea drug Zofran could cause birth defects. The ruling upholds GSK’s 2021 summary judgment win before U.S. District Judge F. Dennis Saylor in Boston who found federal drug labeling law preempted the plaintiffs’ state law claims. The Williams & Connolly team also included Jami King as well as co-counsel at Shook Hardy & Bacon including Madeleine McDonough, Hildy Sastre, Bill Geraghty, Jennifer Hill, Jennifer Stevenson and Tom Sheehan.
Nick Gravante of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft and the rest of the defense team for Allen Weisselberg, the longtime chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, land runners-up honors as well. Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan this week sentenced Weisselberg to five months of prison time after he testified at trial against the company. Weisselberg previously pleaded guilty in August to 15-counts including larceny and tax fraud charges after receiving $1.76 million in unreported compensation, including rent for a Manhattan apartment, luxury cars and private school tuition for his grandchildren. The sentence was well short of the five to 15 years he potentially faced without the plea deal. Weisselberg’s defense team also included Mary Mulligan of Friedman Kaplan Seiler & Adelman and Bryan Skarlatos of Kostelanetz & Fink, as well as Elizabeth Moore and Dillon Carlin of Cadwalader.