Michelle Levin has substantial experience counseling executives and companies in all phases of high-profile criminal investigations and prosecutions. She also serves as the managing partner of Steptoe's New York office.
Michelle represents companies and individuals in significant matters brought by criminal and regulatory agencies, including the Department of Justice, Securities and Exchange Commission, and New York State Department of Financial Services, involving securities and accounting fraud, antitrust matters, economic sanctions, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), and other business crimes. Many of these matters resulted in no charges being filed. She has also successfully conducted complex cross-border internal investigations.
In her last five trials, Michelle defended individuals in a breadth of industries, including financial services, pharmaceutical, and retail. One of her recent trials resulted in a complete acquittal of all charges. Michelle's clients appreciate her ability to successfully and strategically guide them through all phases of investigations and prosecutions, bringing sound judgment and creativity to bear at each stage.
Michelle has also litigated a wide range of civil proceedings, including securities class actions and complex contract disputes.
- New York
- US District Court, Eastern District of New York
- US District Court, Southern District of New York
- US Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
- J.D., University of Virginia School of Law, 2004, Executive Editor, Journal of Law and Politics
- B.A., Tufts University, 1999, cum laude
Areas of Work
- Defended former real estate investment trust CFO at trial in DOJ prosecution of accounting fraud charges, in parallel SEC investigation, and in multiple federal securities class actions.
- Defended former assistant general counsel of a major pharmaceutical company at trial in DOJ prosecution of obstruction and false statements charges related to representations made to the FDA. The Steptoe defense team obtained a judgment of acquittal of all charges.
- Defended a former hedge fund manager and co-founder at trial in the landmark insider trading case US v. Newman. The conviction was overturned in a unanimous decision by the Second Circuit.
- Defended former retail company CEO at trial in DOJ prosecution of accounting fraud charges related to the alleged inflation of earnings through dozens of “round-trip” transactions.
- Defended a former public official at trial in DOJ prosecution of obstruction and campaign finance-related charges.
- Represented former software company CEO in connection with accounting fraud investigations by DOJ, SEC and UK SFO. The Steptoe defense team successfully dismissed a related federal securities lawsuit.
- Represented executive of major bank in investigations by DOJ and UK FCA of alleged antitrust violations.
- Represented former general counsel of a technology company in DOJ investigation of alleged FCPA violations.
- Represented CEO of major bank in DOJ investigation related to mortgage-backed securities.
- Conducted cross-border internal investigations for several companies arising out of alleged antitrust and FCPA violations.
- "Recent Developments in Brady," New York City Bar's 9th Annual White Collar Crime Institute, January 11, 2021
"The Perfect Storm For White Collar Crime: Internal Fraud and Insider Trading In The Era Of COVID-19," Women, Influence & Power in Law, October 26, 2020
"Where in a Cloud is my Data? Search Warrants and Data Privacy Issues," Lex Mundi's Business Crimes and Compliance Group Annual Meeting, October 3, 2017
News & Publications
New York Law Journal
April 20, 2021
New York Law Journal
December 1, 2020
June 26, 2020
September 20, 2017
June 2, 2017
September 21, 2016
June 15, 2016
October 13, 2015
International Law Advisory
August 25, 2020
By: Alexandra Baj, Ali Burney, Brian Egan, Eric C. Emerson, Edward J. Krauland, Michelle L. Levin, Patrick F. Linehan, Meredith Rathbone, Wendy Wysong, Elizabeth (Liz) LaRocca, Nicholas Turner, Dana J. Delott, Anthony Pan, Zachary Simmons, Martin Willner, Jacob Nelson (International Trade Assistant)
- Legal 500 US, Dispute Resolution: Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense (2015-2017)
- Super Lawyers, New York "Rising Star," Criminal Defense: White Collar (2013-2017)
American Bar Association
New York City Bar Association
New York Council of Defense Lawyers
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
Women’s White Collar Defense Association