Juan Arteaga
Juan Arteaga ()

Juan Arteaga, a former associate and counsel at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett who most recently served as a deputy assistant attorney general for civil enforcement at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., has joined Crowell & Moring as an antitrust partner in New York.

“Whether it’s a merger, litigation, criminal prosecution or competition policy issue, Crowell regularly serves as the go-to antitrust counsel for U.S. and foreign clients,” Arteaga said. “So I viewed Crowell as providing me a great platform as I transition from government service back to private practice.”

In his new role at the firm, which has been busy on the lateral hiring front in 2017, Arteaga plans to advise clients on civil and criminal antitrust matters, as well as complex commercial litigation matters, such as class actions, international arbitrations and securities and shareholder litigation. A portion of Arteaga’s practice will also be dedicated to providing antitrust and litigation counsel to Latin American companies doing business with the U.S., and conversely U.S. companies needing legal representation in Latin America.

“I’ve dealt with a lot of these enforcers over my career,” Arteaga said, who officially left Main Justice in January amid the inauguration of President Donald Trump.

Arteaga joined the Justice Department’s antitrust division from Simpson Thacher in 2013 as counsel to then-assistant attorney general William “Bill” Baer, who in May announced that he would return to Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, having previously led the antitrust group at predecessor firm Arnold & Porter. In 2015, Arteaga was named chief of staff and senior counsel to the assistant attorney general in the antitrust division before being appointed as deputy assistant attorney general less than a year later.

While at the Justice Department, Arteaga had key roles on antitrust division teams challenging several high-profile mergers and asset sales, including a proposed $375 million merger between National Cinemedia Inc. and Screenvision Cinema Network LLC, two of the nation’s largest cinema advertising services, which was called off before trial. He also played key roles in the division’s challenging of mergers involving companies like Delta Air Lines Inc. and United Continental Holdings Inc., as well as a scuttled $3.3 billion deal between General Electric Co. and Sweden’s AB Electrolux. (Arteaga said at a conference earlier this year that bipartisan, career antitrust staffers at the Justice Department—not members of the Trump administration—would determine what deals will pass regulatory muster.)

The addition of Arteaga in New York is part of a strategic plan by Washington, D.C.-based Crowell & Moring to expand in the city, where earlier this year Crowell & Moring called off merger talks with local shop Herrick, Feinstein.

“[This] is part of the firm’s strategic investment in growing its New York presence and commitment toward further expanding our top-tier antitrust and financial services litigation practices in a key market with important clients,” said a statement announcing Arteaga’s hire by Crowell & Moring’s New York managing partner Glen McGorty, who joined the firm in 2013.

Arteaga said that he anticipates working collaboratively with Crowell & Moring’s white-collar team in New York—partner Kelly Currie returned to the firm last year after a stint heading the U.S. attorney’s office in Brooklyn—to target financial services clients and grow the firm’s local antitrust footprint in the city.

“We’re going to be focused on going after business from financial institutions, such as investment banks and private equity firms and Fortune 100 companies that are based in the New York City area,” Arteaga said. “That’s going to be sort of one of the primary targets for me.”

Arteaga, 40, declined to name the legal recruiter he used in making the move to Crowell & Moring, whose “entrepreneurial” nature he credited for helping it stand out when making his decision to return to private practice.

The firm, which recently added government and regulatory affairs lawyer Traci Vitek as a senior policy director in Washington, D.C., has been on a lateral tear of late, picking up a pair of Sedgwick product liability and environmental litigators in the nation’s capital and two intellectual property litigators from Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe in Los Angeles.

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