David Krakoff


Washington, D.C.

David Krakoff has established himself over the last 30 years as one of the nation’s leading trial lawyers and counselors for high-stakes criminal and complex civil litigation. He represents corporations and executives in all aspects of criminal, civil and parallel enforcement matters with strategic advice, investigation and advocacy before government agencies and trials.

His clients are investigated and prosecuted by the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Treasury Department and other domestic and foreign enforcement agencies. They face prosecution for potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), and the laws regulating securities enforcement, accounting fraud, public corruption, antitrust, tax health care, export control, False Claims Act (FCA), trade secrets and the environment. In addition, his clients are often involved in high-stakes shareholder class action litigation. He has had primary trial responsibility in more than 50 cases.

David is a recognized leader in the field of white collar and complex litigation. He is a Fellow in The American College of Trial Lawyers. Chambers USA has ranked him as a leading Litigation lawyer (2006-2022), and described him as "one of the best trial lawyers in the city … a genuine lion of the white-collar Bar ... extremely thoughtful and imaginative in developing investigation and trial strategy … He really knows his way around the court and the justice system. One of his greatest strengths is that he is unflinching in his willingness to try cases." Chambers also noted his FCPA work: “He is a shrewd tactician and always thoroughly prepared … great tactical judgment and a sense for strategy." Other accolades include: Legal 500 (2012, 2015-2022), which recognized him as the leader of Buckley’s "terrific" team that is “highly active in a number of regulated industries, with noted expertise in the financial services sector." Benchmark Litigation 2019 named him as a top practitioner in White Collar and General Commercial Litigation. In 2015 he was named a Law360 Trial Ace and a National Law Journal White Collar Trailblazer.

Prior to joining Orrick, David was a partner at Buckley LLP. In addition to his experience in private practice, he served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia for 10 years.

"One of the best trial lawyers in the city … a genuine lion of the white-collar bar ... extremely thoughtful and imaginative in developing investigation and trial strategy ... unflinching in his willingness to try cases … one hell of a trial record." - Chambers USA

  • Some of his noteworthy clients include:

    • 2014-2018: Universal Entertainment Corp., a large Japanese gaming manufacturer, and its subsidiary, Aruze USA, Inc., in FCPA-related litigation brought by Wynn Resorts Ltd., as well as in related parallel matters. The case involved one of the first examples of a private party using allegations of FCPA violations as an affirmative weapon to gain an upper hand in an unrelated contract dispute. After six years of litigation – during which the parties produced millions of documents, argued more than a dozen appeals and scores of motions, and took nearly 100 depositions – Wynn Resorts agreed to pay $2.6 billion to our clients shortly before the start of trial
    • 2012-2014: CEO/CFO of Noble Corporation, an oilfield services company, in an SEC enforcement action litigated in the United States District Court for Southern District of Texas. Following full discovery, the SEC voluntarily dropped six of seven claims and entered a favorable consent decree just before trial commenced
    • 2010-2012: Owner and General Manager of a military arms company in DOJ’s largest FCPA prosecution of individuals. The prosecution involved the first sting operation in an FCPA case using video and wire surveillance and an undercover informant and agents. After a four-month trial in 2011-2012 ending in a hung jury, the court granted the DOJ's motion to dismiss all charges
    • 2004-2012: Former Senior Vice President and Controller of Fannie Mae in parallel DOJ and SEC investigations and in related shareholder litigation. The matter involved alleged accounting errors reported in 2004 by the company’s regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which resulted in a $6 billion restatement. Summary judgment and dismissal were granted in the securities fraud class action after full discovery over eight years completely exonerating Mr. Krakoff’s client of the highly-publicized allegations
    • 2005-2009: Senior Vice President of W.R. Grace in a prosecution on charges of conspiracy to violate the Clean Air Act through the knowing endangerment of the townspeople of Libby, Montana by the alleged release of asbestos contaminating their air and homes. This was the DOJ’s largest and longest environmental crimes prosecution, which garnered national press attention due to the health impact on 300 residents of Libby. The prosecution was initiated nearly 40 years after the alleged conduct concluded. The three month trial ended in an acquittal on all counts