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For more than 25 years, James Aiosa has represented clients in national and international complex toxic and mass tort litigation, including in state and federal class actions, multi-district litigation, and appeals, involving military, commercial/agricultural, and consumer products and associated chemical compounds.
Jim has deep case management experience, serving as lead coordinating counsel in litigation involving chemical exposures, environmental contaminants, herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides, as well as other chemicals, compounds and products considered persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic.
Jim has also represented large commercial insurance companies in toxic tort, environmental, product liability, and property damage matters, including cases involving PCBs, TCE, asbestos, and tobacco, as well as employment discrimination class action claims.
Serving as lead counsel, Jim has had extensive involvement in a range of complex mass tort and class action products liability litigation, both foreign and domestic, involving military, consumer, and commercial/agricultural products containing dioxins and furans, hexachlorobenzene (HCB), pentachlorophenol (PCP), arsenic, cacodylic acid, and other organic arsenicals. He has defended chemical product manufacturers against claims involving cancers, endocrine-related disorders, neurological complaints, neurodevelopmental deficiencies and other alleged multi-generational effects, pulmonary and cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, fear of future diseases, and medical monitoring. Jim also has prodigious experience in developing the legal and scientific responses to such claims, including those for medical monitoring and future medical surveillance.
Jim has played an integral role in the development of his clients’ medical and scientific defenses and trial strategies relating to these issues, including the identification and development of medical and scientific expert witnesses and associated arguments and evidence. In the course of his efforts, Jim has worked closely with a range of world-class scientists and clinicians to apply efficiently and effectively principles of toxicology, epidemiology, risk assessment, and biostatistics, in the defense of his clients. Jim also has extensive experience addressing the complex procedural and jurisdictional issues, obstacles, and opportunities frequently presented by complex toxic tort litigation, particularly those venued internationally, including by developing and executing effective strategies for addressing such challenges and controversies both pre-and-post-litigation.
Jim has written extensively on complex/mass tort and related issues, and his articles have appeared in such publications as Mass Torts, LJN’s Product Liability Law & Strategy, DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar, among other media. Jim serves on the Adjunct Board of Advisors of the US-Korea Law Foundation and was formerly an appointed member of the Nassau County Asian American Economic Advisory Commission.
Walter counsels private and public companies in their roles as sponsors, investors, lenders, and borrowers in energy and infrastructure projects.
His experience includes drafting and negotiating documentation specific to project finance, tax equity finance, bond offerings, and general corporate matters.
Colby Allsbrook is Of Counsel in the New York office and a member of the Complex Litigation and Dispute Resolution Group.
Colby has deep experience in financial services, asset-backed security and mortgage-related litigation, and has been at the forefront of litigation arising out of the financial crisis.
Prior to joining Orrick, he was a Director and senior litigation counsel at Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC, where he chaired the firm's Mortgage Securities Litigation Task Force and helped direct the bank's litigation response to the mortgage crisis. He previously practiced law in the New York offices of King & Spalding and Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft.
Howard Altarescu is a partner in Orrick’s Finance Group. He co-leads the Firm’s global Fintech team, helping industry participants navigate this complex and evolving sector.
Howard Altarescu advises bank and non-bank financial institutions and governmental agencies in connection with innovative capital markets, debt financing and other transactions, as well as on the implications of financial markets regulation. Howard also co-heads the firm's Fintech team, which is focused on serving a wide array of fintech platforms and other businesses. Howard has previously served as Orrick's Finance Sector Leader, responsible for implementing the firm's strategy to provide distinctive transactional, litigation and regulatory services to financial institution clients globally, as well as co-head of the firm’s Finance Business Unit. In these roles, Howard has a broad strategic, advisory and business development role at the firm, drawing on many years of experience, both in law firms and as a banker helping clients develop innovative financial solutions to meet their objectives.
Most recently, Howard has worked on securitizations and other structured financings backed by marketplace loans and has advised numerous clients on the implications of the Madden v. Midland Funding case, the OCC "fintech charter" and related legal issues. Howard has also recently worked on a number of groundbreaking mortgage credit risk transfer transactions between Fannie Mae and major banks and other clients.
Peter Amend is a senior associate in the Firm's Restructuring practice, where he has advised a variety of clients, such as ad hoc creditor groups, debtors and equity owners, in restructuring-related matters.
Upon graduation from law school, Peter clerked for the Hon. Martin Glenn, United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. Prior to joining Orrick, Peter was an associate at White & Case LLP in the firm's financial restructuring and insolvency practice.
Peter is a graduate of Brooklyn Law School where he served as executive articles editor for the Brooklyn Journal of Corporate, Financial, & Commercial Law. Peter is also a frequent author and contributor to the Distressed Download, Orrick's bankruptcy blog. Some of Peter's works have been published in nationwide publications such as Law360.
Candice Andalia is a Managing Associate in Orrick's New York office and a member of the firm's Mass Torts and Product Liability practice. She represents clients in all phases of complex multi-party, consolidated, and class action litigation, and has successfully handled significant actions involving the prescription drug and consumer products industries in federal and state courts, both at the trial and appellate levels. Candice also has extensive experience white collar, investigations, and securities litigation including allegations of off-label promotion, anti-kickback statute violations, False Claims Act violations, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations, and other issues related to sales, marketing, and pricing practices. While Candice's most recent engagements include acting as a member of the Orrick teams successfully defending Johnson & Johnson and DISH, she has:
In addition to her practice, Candice maintains an active pro bono practice handling civil and criminal appeals, with a special focus on cases in the service of Spanish-language speakers.
Candice received her JD from Cornell and two bachelors' degrees from Yale University, one in history and one in political philosophy.
John Ansbro is a seasoned litigator based in New York specializing in complex commercial litigation representing large, sophisticated clients in their most important matters in state and federal courts across the country. He has secured over $1 billion in damages when acting as plaintiffs’ counsel, and he has secured dismissals at the pleading stage and summary judgment dismissals when defending his clients.
A front line advocate, John has deep experience in all aspects of litigation in the trial courts, on appeals, and arbitration. He has handled a wide range of matters that include a host of different contract disputes, issues arising from the 2008 Financial Crisis involving residential home mortgage backed securities (RMBS), bankruptcy litigation, insurance recovery, consumer class actions, and commercial real estate foreclosure. John has also served as an arbitrator on an ICC International Court of Arbitration panel in a cross-border contract dispute.
John currently is lead counsel to Hemlock Semiconductor Operations LLC (majority owned by Dow Corning Corporation and Corning, Inc.) in seven actions pending in Michigan and New York courts seeking $3 billion in damages where Hemlock asserts breaches of long-term supply agreements against defendants located in Japan, Germany, China and Taiwan. In a case of first impression in Michigan, John won the dismissal of an attempt by a Japanese conglomerate to avoid $1.4 billion in purchase obligations on the theory that alleged illegal acts by the Chinese Government constituted an “act of government” under the parties’ force majeure provision. The Michigan Court of Appeals unanimously affirmed that dismissal. In another of these actions, John recently obtained summary judgment against a German company along with a damages award of $793 million. John regularly travels to Japan to coordinate strategy with the team of Japanese attorneys defending Hemlock in the Tokyo District Court against alleged breaches of the antitrust laws of Japan.
Since 2011 John has been a senior member of the Orrick team that represents Credit Suisse Securities USA in actions brought by monoline insurers seeking to deny coverage under financial guarantees they issued covering a number RMBS. He also defends Credit Suisse in several actions brought by RMBS investors alleging breaches of representations and warranties. As lead counsel, John obtained a dismissal—from the bench, after lengthy argument—of a $46 million fraud action in which the issuer of a collateralized debt obligation (CDO) claimed it was fraudulently induced to guarantee a credit default swap referencing $396 million of CDO certificates underwritten by Credit Suisse. John demonstrated to the court that based upon public information and other facts known to the issuer, it was on sufficient notice of the alleged fraud well before the expiration of the statute of limitations. John argued and won a unanimous appellate affirmance of that dismissal.
John is also a senior member of Orrick’s team representing one of the nation’s largest mortgage loan servicers. This engagement covers all of the company’s RMBS related legal issues, including allegations by various certificate holders and RMBS trustees of faulty loan servicing under the trust agreements. None of these allegations have been successful.
Beyond these examples, John’s depth of experience includes handling matters in a wide variety of industries, as shown by the examples below of his engagements.
Prior to joining Orrick, John was a Litigation Associate at Donovan Leisure Newton & Irvine LLP.
Jen Argyle is an employment law career associate in our New York office.
Jen Argyle joined the firm in 2017. She concentrates in employment disputes, executive counseling, and has represented management in labor arbitrations. Jen enables her executive clients to avoid litigation surrounding employment negotiations and contract issues. She counsels corporate clients on litigation avoidance, conducts internal investigations discretely and efficiently, and drafts internal policies and procedures, further insulating companies and business owners from costly court proceedings.
Jen also represents clients before both federal and state courts, arbitrations, mediations, and state and federal government agency proceedings. She has responded to claims of discrimination, retaliation, and harassment and she has also addressed wage-hour, misclassification, and disability/medical leave issues. Before joining the firm, Jen was an associate at a regional law firm where she represented management in all aspects of single-plaintiff and multi-plaintiff employment litigation.
Stephen Ashley is a partner in the New York office and a member of the firm's Capital Markets practice. He advises clients on a wide range of securities law matters and regularly represents both issuers and underwriters in both domestic and cross-border capital markets transactions.
Stephen's experience includes public offerings and private placements of common and preferred equity and investment grade, high yield and convertible debt securities, as well as liability management transactions such as exchange offers, tender offers and consent solicitations. He also advises clients on various compliance, corporate governance, stock exchange listing and other general corporate matters, while working closely with Orrick’s M&A and Restructuring teams on securities related issues.
He has advised companies from a wide range of industries, including the information technology, software, finance, consumer products, biotechnology, life sciences and pharmaceuticals, energy, infrastructure and transportation sectors.
Stephen routinely works on high profile transactions that have been recognized for their complexity and execution. IFLR1000 recognized Stephen as a notable Practitioner in 2019 and 2020. Legal500 reported in 2016 that clients say Stephen “is very responsive, does thorough research and speaks in plain English.”
Stephen is a member of Orrick's opinion committee.
Marie Athaide is a securitization attorney in the New York office representing issuers and underwriters in connection with private and public offerings of asset-backed securities. Her practice focuses on transactions involving a variety of residential mortgage loans, including non-qualified mortgages.In addition, Marie has experience in credit risk transfer securities, re-securitizations and complex securitizations of Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Assessments, commercial mortgage loans, credit card receivables and utility receivables. She has represented financial institutions in connection with whole loan purchases and sales and advised mortgage loan servicers in connection with servicing operations and servicing rights transfers.
Kenton Atta-Krah is an associate in the White Collar, Investigations, Securities Litigation & Compliance practice group.
Kenton represents clients in civil litigation and white collar matters, including domestic and international internal corporate investigations and regulatory agency investigations. He has trial and litigation experience before the United Nations Dispute Tribunal in New York, and has had experience responding to congressional subpoenas, investigating allegations of sexual abuse by faculty members at an educational institution, and responding to an institutional data breach affecting thousands of people in all 50 states and in several U.S. territories and jurisdictions.
Kenton is active in community service, in particular, through the representation of incarcerated individuals under the Criminal Justice Act (“CJA”), where he has been involved in Section 1983 civil rights actions and other civil matters.
Prior to joining Orrick, Kenton was an Associate at Day Pitney LLP. While in law school, he was a research assistant to Professor Doriane Coleman and interned with the CWS-RDU Immigration and Refugee Program, which provides legal assistance to individuals and families on immigration matters. He also spent time as a Summer Associate at Bentsi-Enchill, Letsa & Ankomah, a law firm in Accra, Ghana.
New York; Boston; Silicon Valley
New York; Boston; Silicon Valley
Christopher Austin is global co-head of Orrick’s Capital Markets practice as well as global co-chair of Orrick's Blockchain and Cryptocurrency practice. He focuses on capital markets, cryptocurrency, venture capital and corporate law, with extensive experience in public offerings, public and private company governance and securities law compliance.
Chris counsels public and high-growth technology companies on general corporate and transactional matters, including advising on formation, venture financings, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, corporate governance, and intellectual property issues. He has extensive experience advising both companies and investment banks on capital markets matters, including leading deals involving BAML, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley, in connection with initial public offerings and follow-on offerings of technology and life sciences companies.
With a combination of securities law, fintech and startup experience, Chris has become a recognized leader on cryptocurrency and blockchain matters. Chambers USA ranks him Band 1 for Fintech in the USA and reports: "clients call [...] upon his wealth of experience in public offerings, SAFT issues and token sales. Sources cite his "commercial" and "thorough" approach as a key asset, while also praising his ability to "get things done." Recent experience includes working with companies such as Hedera (Hashgraph), Threefold Foundation and others on issues around token sales, SAFT offerings and securities law compliance. He leads a multi-disciplinary team of money transmission, derivatives, broker dealer, litigation and compensation and benefits experts to provide holistic advice in a rapidly changing regulatory environment. Notable Fintech companies he works with include Betterment, SoFi, Personal Capital, Debtsy, Credit IQ and Galaxy Digital.