When the National Collegiate Athletic Association asked Kenneth Wainstein and a team of attorneys from Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft to investigate the NCAA’s enforcement staff, it was a tall order. In 27 days, Wainstein and a team of attorneys interviewed 22 people and sifted through 4,300 documents to product the 55-page report, which ultimately found missteps on the part of staff, but no violation of law or bylaw.
The NCAA was investigating allegations that University of Miami players received illegal gifts from convicted Ponzi-scheme orchestrator Nevin Shapiro. Former director of enforcement Ameen Najjar circumvented the advice of legal staff when he hired Shapiro’s attorney, Maria Elena Perez, to depose witnesses key to the NCAA investigation using her client’s bankruptcy subpoenas. After the NCAA learned of the depositions, it agreed not to use them in the investigation.
On January 22, the NCAA hired Wainstein and his team to investigate the Perez depositions. A day after the report came out, Julie Roe Lach, the group’s vice president of enforcement, was fired.
"One thing that makes this situation stand out was the speed with which we had to do this report," Wainstein said. "In a short time we talked to all these people and read through thousands of documents. It was a fairly intense process." Matthew Huisman
MENENDEZ HIRES TRIO OF VETERAN ADVISERS
As Senator Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) faces allegations about personal improprieties, he is looking for help in Washington through a damage-control team that includes at least two lawyers and a consultant who served as U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr.’s top spokesman. Menendez has enlisted McDermott Will & Emery partner Stephen Ryan, Perkins Coie partner Marc Elias, and Matthew Miller, the former Justice Department spokesman who is now at the consultancy Vianovo, according to news reports.
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