Areas of Practice
  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., summa cum laude, 1996, Francis E. Lucey S.J. Award (highest grade point average in graduating class)
  • Dartmouth College, B.A., 1993
Bar & Court Admissions
  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland
  • US Supreme Court
  • US District Court, District of Columbia
  • US District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

Brian M. Heberlig

1330 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20036
TEL: +1 202 429 8134
FAX: +1 202 429 3902

Brian M. Heberlig is a recognized trial lawyer who successfully defends individuals and corporations in all phases of federal criminal investigations and prosecutions. Chambers USA 2016 describes him as a "premier" criminal defense attorney with “spectacular” courtroom advocacy, with one source noting that "he is an outstanding and well-rounded lawyer, a very good public speaker, detail-oriented and well prepared."

Mr. Heberlig defends corporate executives, public officials, and other individuals and entities in matters involving allegations of public corruption, securities and accounting fraud, campaign finance violations, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations, antitrust conspiracies, healthcare fraud, tax evasion, obstruction of justice, environmental crimes, and export violations.

He also conducts internal investigations on behalf of corporate clients to examine allegations of criminal conduct and handles parallel civil proceedings arising out of criminal investigations, including multidistrict securities fraud litigation, congressional investigations, Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement proceedings, and Federal Election Commission matters.

Mr. Heberlig is a member of Steptoe’s Executive Committee and co-head of the Compliance, Investigations, Trade and Enforcement Department. He previously chaired the firm’s White-Collar Criminal Defense Group, which was named The National Law Journal's Washington Litigation Department of the Year in White-Collar Crime in 2014 and 2017, and a Law360 White-Collar "Group of the Year" in 2016. 

Representative Matters

  • Secured a rare Rule 29 acquittal for a businessman accused of bribing a former Pennsylvania Treasurer with campaign contributions, in a 79-count honest services bribery and money laundering case tried in federal court in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
  • Secured an acquittal for David Rainey, the highest ranking BP executive charged in connection with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, on a false statements charge tried in New Orleans, Louisiana. The acquittal followed the district court’s dismissal, on the first day of trial, of a related obstruction of Congress charge, after extensive pre-trial litigation in which the Steptoe defense team successfully argued that selective invocation of the Speech or Debate Clause privilege by congressional witnesses interfered with Mr. Rainey’s right to present a defense.

Served as trial counsel to numerous other high-profile clients, including the defense of:

  • Former Blackwater security guard Paul Slough on charges relating to a shooting incident in Nisur Square in Baghdad, Iraq
  • Former WorldCom CEO Bernie Ebbers on securities fraud charges
  • DC real estate developer Douglas Jemal on bribery and tax evasion charges
  • Naval Academy quarterback Lamar Owens at a general court martial
  • DC Metropolitan Police Department homicide detective Erick Brown on obstruction of justice charges
  • Yah Lin “Charlie” Trie on campaign finance charges related to the Clinton DNC fundraising investigation

Defended numerous government officials, including:

  • Former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr.
  • Former Congressman Richard Renzi
  • Former DC Councilmember Michael Brown
  • Department of Justice (DOJ) trial attorney in investigation relating to prosecution of former Senator Ted Stevens
  • Former US House of Representatives Transportation Committee Chairman in House Ethics Committee investigation
  • The Republic of Kazakhstan in an FCPA investigation
  • Michigan City Councilmember

Defended numerous corporations and corporate executives, including:

  • Control Components Inc. in a criminal FCPA matter
  • Audit Committee Chairman of Chiquita Brands International
  • Former General Counsel of Tyco
  • Former CEO of Firestone
  • Executives of medical device company in off-label promotion investigation
  • Executives of auto parts manufacturers in cartel investigations
  • Executive of Archer Daniels Midland
  • Corporate executive in the FCPA "shot show" investigation


  • Named one of The Am Law Litigation Daily’s “Litigators of the Week” for securing rare Rule 29 judgment in United States v. Richard Ireland, 2017
  • Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers; Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (District of Columbia), 2012-2017
  • Legal 500 US, Dispute Resolution: Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense, 2012-2017
  • Washington, DC Super Lawyers, Criminal Defense (White-Collar), 2010-2017
  • Named one of The Am Law Litigation Daily’s “Litigators of the Week” for securing a complete defense acquittal in United States v. Rainey, 2015
  • "Top 100 Lawyer," Washington, DC Super Lawyers, 2014-2015
  • Named one of Washington, DC's top 40 lawyers under 40 by The National Law Journal, 2009
  • Named in "Best Lawyers" for White-Collar Criminal Defense by Washingtonian magazine, 2011, 2013, 2015
  • Named a Top Lawyer in Criminal Defense by Washingtonian magazine, 2009
  • Best Lawyers in America, White-Collar Criminal Defense, 2014-2018
  • "Rising Star" in White-Collar Defense by Law360, 2011
  • Co-Chair of the DC Regional Subcommittee of the American Bar Association’s White-Collar Crime Committee, 2013-1017
  • Co-Chair of the American Bar Association's White-Collar Crime Subcommittee on Public Corruption and Extortion 2008-2012

Select News & Events

Selected Publications

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Professional Affiliations

  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers