Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP is comprised of an extraordinary team of internationally recognized principals from the judicial, prosecutorial, and law enforcement domains. Additionally, the firm has access to a sophisticated and global network of specialty counsel and legal experts.
James R. Bucknam
The Honorable Stanley Sporkin (Ret.)
The Honorable Louis J. Freeh [Download VCard]
Founder and Senior Managing Partner
Louis J. Freeh was born in Jersey City, New Jersey. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Rutgers University in 1971 and received his Juris Doctor (JD) degree from Rutgers School of Law in 1974 and his Master of Laws (LLM), in criminal law, from New York University School of Law in 1984. Freeh joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as a Special Agent in 1975, working assignments both at the Bureau's headquarters and later transferring to its New York City Field Division.
In 1981, Freeh joined the United States Attorney's Office in the Southern District of New York as an Assistant United States Attorney. Following a series of promotions, and high-profile federal criminal prosecutions, he was appointed Deputy U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. In 1991, Freeh was appointed by President George H.W. Bush as the United States District Court Judge for the Southern District of New York.
Freeh served on the federal bench until his appointment as Director of the FBI by President William J. Clinton in 1993. Freeh served as the Bureau's Director through 2001, at which time he accepted an offer from MBNA America Bank as Vice-Chairman, General Counsel, and Ethics Officer. In 2006, Freeh served as MBNA's principal lawyer when Bank of America acquired MBNA in a $35 billion transaction.
Following the acquisition, Freeh elected to leave the bank to pursue private law and international consulting endeavors, forming Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC in 2007 and also Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP. In addition, Freeh currently serves on the corporate board of Bristol-Myers Squibb.
The Honorable Eugene R. Sullivan [Download VCard]
Eugene R. Sullivan is a retired Federal Judge in Washington D.C. with over 16 years of appellate experience. Nominated by President Reagan and confirmed by the Senate, Judge Sullivan was installed as a Federal Judge in 1986. In 1990, President Bush named him the Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals (AF). In 2002, he was elevated to Senior Status. When not recalled to active Court service, Judge Sullivan is a senior partner in the D.C. Law firm of Freeh, Sporkin & Sullivan LLP.
Born in St Louis, Missouri, Judge Sullivan graduated from the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York, where he was a member of the Cadet Honor Committee and the varsity lacrosse team. Following graduation, he served in the Army for five years and qualified as a tanker, an Airborne Ranger, a Ranger Instructor and a Jumpmaster. He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Air Medal and other decorations in Vietnam. Judge Sullivan has been inducted into the U.S. Army Ranger Hall of Fame.
After the Army, Judge Sullivan graduated from Georgetown University Law Center, serving as an editor of the Georgetown Law Journal in his senior year. After law school Judge Sullivan clerked for Chief Judge M.C. Matthes of the United States Court of Appeals (8th Circuit) and worked for the Patton Boggs law firm in Washington, D.C.
Judge Sullivan served in the White House on the legal defense team of President Nixon during the Watergate investigation in 1974. From 1974 to 1982, he was a trial attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, D.C. From 1982 until he became a Federal Judge in 1986, Judge Sullivan served in the Pentagon as the General Counsel and the Chief Ethics Officer of the U.S. Air Force after serving initially as the Deputy General Counsel.
From 1982 until 1986, Judge Sullivan was the General Counsel of the National Reconnaissance Office (“NRO”-a then super-secret US satellite intelligence agency). In addition, in 1984-1986, he served as the Governor of Wake Island (the U.S. possession in the Pacific). In 1988 and 1989, Judge Sullivan served on the Federal Commission to review the West Point Honor Code. He is a Trustee Emeritus and the founding Chair of the Ethics Committee of the West Point Board of Trustees (Association of Graduates) and served on the first Executive Board of the Duke Law School Center for Law, Ethics and National Security.
Judge Sullivan has given many lectures on American law to visiting international judges and lawyers. For many years, he was the chair of three annual conferences: the International Judicial Conference (Criminal Law), the Great Debate (a debate on judicial reform) between the USA and England, and the International Diplomatic Conference. During his career in promoting the rule of law, Judge Sullivan has been awarded the Medal of Justice from Romania, the First Class Medal of Defense from Hungary, the Defense Minister’s Citation of Merit from the Republic of China, an honorary Doctor of Law degree from New England School of Law, the Air Force Exceptional Civilian Service Medal, the Medal for Outstanding Public Service from the U.S. Department of Defense, and the 2001 Castle Award from the West Point Society (DC). The Castle Award is given to one West Point graduate each year. Judge Sullivan is a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
He has 2 published novels, both political thrillers: The Majority Rules (2005) & The Report to the Judiciary (2008) and is the Chair of the Judging Panel for the annual International Impac Dublin Literary Award (100,000 Euros for a single work of fiction).
Judge Sullivan is married to Lis Sullivan from Denmark who is an artist and anthropologist (her field--bound foot women of China). Their Daughter, Kim, is a graduate of Columbia University, attended graduate school at Columbia University, and works as an ABC producer (photo) in New York City; Eugene II, their son, works as a litigator in Washington DC and is a graduate of Duke University, The London School of Economics, and Columbia Law.
Omar Y. McNeill [Download VCard]
Partner and General Counsel
Omar Y. McNeill, prior to joining Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP in 2009 as Partner and General Counsel, most recently served as the Bank of America Global Card Services Legal Executive, in Wilmington, DE, where he was responsible for overseeing the Bank of America Global Card Services Legal Department, with staff in the U.S., Europe and Canada. In that role he also provided strategic guidance to the business' senior leadership team on myriad matters impacting the company's operations in the U.S. and abroad.
Prior to joining Bank of America in 2006 (in connection with a merger), McNeill was employed by MBNA America Bank, N.A., where he held positions of Senior Executive Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, responsible for managing the company's Law Division, and prior to that, Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Litigation Counsel, responsible for managing the efforts of the Litigation and Employment Practices Group within the Law Division. Before joining MBNA in 1997, McNeill practiced with the law firm of Young, Conaway, Stargatt and Taylor in Wilmington, DE, focusing on litigation and other matters.
Over the course of his career McNeill has counseled clients on compliance, regulatory, legislative and risk mitigation matters, as well as numerous legal issues concerning, among other things, consumer lending, commercial transactions, complex litigation, labor and employment, and corporate governance. Additionally, McNeill has represented companies in connection with audits, investigations and complaints initiated by governmental bodies.
McNeill is a 1989 graduate of Brown University where he majored in Economics. He is a 1992 graduate of Duke University School of Law.
McNeill serves on the Delaware Community Foundation, the Delaware Leadership Foundation and the Board of Bar Examiners of the Delaware Supreme Court. His past professional and community involvement includes, among other activities: the Delaware State Bar Association Professional Guidance Committee, the Board on Professional Responsibility of the Supreme Court of Delaware; the Board of Advisors of Delaware Youth For Christ, Inc.; Perinatal Association of Delaware Advisory Board; Delaware Guidance Services for Children and Youth Board member; Eighth Street Community Development Corp. Board member, and the Board of Trustees of the Episcopal Academy. He also is a youth coach for the Wilmington Lacrosse Association.
McNeill is also General Counsel and Secretary of Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC.
Thomas McC. Souther [Download VCard]
Thomas McC. Souther joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP ("FSS") in 2010 as the partner responsible for establishing the firm's New York office. Prior to joining FSS, Souther was a partner for 15 years in the White Collar Practice of a prominent US-based global law firm that he had re-joined after serving for four years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York. As a federal prosecutor, Souther investigated and prosecuted a wide variety of criminal cases, including bank fraud, commodities fraud, and mail and wire fraud. His current practice concentrates in the areas of government and regulatory investigations, white collar criminal defense, and internal investigations, and he has considerable experience in both the trial and appellate courts.
His experience has included advising public and private corporations, boards of directors and special committees, and representing directors, corporate executives, and other individuals in connection with internal investigations, regulatory inquiries, grand jury investigations, and criminal prosecutions. Souther successfully defended at trial in federal district court in Massachusetts a former executive of a pharmaceutical company charged with violating the anti-kickback statute, and won the acquittal at trial in the Southern District of New York of a former employee of Bankers Trust Company who had been charged with misapplication of bank funds. He also advised a publishing and media company in connection with a criminal investigation in the Eastern District of New York relating to circulation fraud, and negotiated a non-prosecution agreement on behalf of the company that avoided prosecution of the company and its subsidiaries. He also recently represented several hedge funds and their principals or employees in connection with various criminal and regulatory investigations arising out of the recent financial crisis. In addition to his experience in the white collar defense and regulatory areas, his practice also has included work on a variety of civil matters, including general corporate and complex commercial litigation, and banking-related matters.
Souther graduated from Bucknell University in 1980 and received his law degree from Fordham University School of Law in 1984.
Joel M. Friedman [Download VCard]
Joel M. Friedman is a partner at Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP and represents corporations and individuals in civil, regulator, and criminal matters. He also conducts internal investigations on behalf of clients and works with them to design and implement compliance programs. He has represented clients before the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), and other agencies.
Friedman had a distinguished 28 year career at the U.S. Department of Justice, capped by 22 years as the Chief Prosecutor in charge of Organized Crime prosecutions for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, where he worked closely with Louis J. Freeh. He also served as the Deputy U.S. Attorney and Chief Ethics Officer for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Philadelphia. Before Philadelphia, he was assigned by the Organized Crime section of the Justice Department to the Southern District of New York and then Boston. Prior to establishing his own firm with Richard Levan, Friedman was a partner at Diworth Pasxon, LLP in Philadelphia, where he headed the firm's White Collar Practice Group.
Friedman served as a member of the International Association of Independent Private Sector Inspector Generals, an organization established to monitor the administration of publicly-awarded funds and to report directly to regulators. He received the "AV" rating from Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating it provides. According to Martindale-Hubbell, "An AV Rating signifies that the lawyer has reached the heights of professional excellence. He or she has usually practiced law for a number of years, and is recognized for the highest levels of skill and integrity."
Friedman was admitted to the bar in 1968, Wisconsin; 1970, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York; 1971, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York and U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit; 1974, U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit; 1980, U.S. Supreme Court; 1989, Pennsylvania and U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania; 1996, U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit. He graduated from the University of Chicago (B.A., 1965) and the University of Wisconsin (J.D., 1968).
Upon his joining FGI, the Honorable Judge Louis J. Freeh said, "Joel Friedman is one of the finest lawyers I know. His integrity and competence as a lawyer is unsurpassed. Over the last 25 years, I have had the privilege of working with him inside and outside of the Department of Justice. I am delighted he now joins me and FGI as a partner."
John G. Rahie [Download VCard]
John G. Rahie joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP ("FSS") on October 1, 2009. Prior to joining FSS, Rahie was the Executive Director of Global Investigations for General Motors Corporation based in Detroit, Michigan. He was a member of the General Motors Legal Staff, specializing in compliance and ethics matters. In his 30 years with General Motors Legal Staff, he held a number of positions including General Counsel of GM Europe based in Zurich. He has extensive experience in compliance and corporate governance issues and served as a member of GM's Senior Management Compliance Committee. He also served as the GM Global Process Leader for Special Investigations and Anti-Corruption Activities, conducting sensitive "white-collar" investigations for GM throughout the world and directing its FCPA and anti-corruption compliance programs.
Rahie holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (BEE) degree from Kettering University, a Juris Doctor (JD) from Michigan State University School of Law and a Master of Laws (LLM) from Wayne State University. He is a member of the Michigan State Bar and the American Bar Association.
Eugene R. Sullivan II [Download VCard]
Eugene R. Sullivan II is a Partner at Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP ("FSS"), in the Washington, D.C. Office. Prior to joining FSS, Sullivan was a litigator at Howrey, LLP in its International Trade and Intellectual Property Litigation division. He specialized in patent litigation in US District Courts and the International Trade Commission under Section 1337 of the Tariff Act of 1930. Sullivan has also worked in the London office of a global law firm where he specialized in U.K. and U.S. Intellectual Property Litigation. He has represented multinationals in disputes relating to infringement of intellectual property rights, protection of confidential information and licensing.
Eugene Sullivan II is a graduate of Duke University (BA History), the London School of Economics (LL.B with Upper Second Class Honors) and Columbia Law (LL.M).
After graduation from the London School of Economics, Sullivan held Judicial Clerkships in London with Master Michael McKenzie, Q.C. of the Royal Court of Appeal and with His Honor Judge Graham Boal, Q.C. of the Central Criminal Court ("The Old Bailey"). After completing Columbia Law School, he served a Judicial Clerkship with Chief Judge H.R. Mayer in the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
Sullivan co-founded and was the first General Counsel of the "No Greater Sacrifice Foundation," a non-profit that provides college scholarships to the children of military members killed in action in the war against terrorism.
Sullivan is a member of the New York and Washington, D.C. bars.
Blake A. Coppotelli [Download VCard]
Blake A. Coppotelli joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP ("FSS") in May 2011 as a Partner in the firm's New York office. Prior to joining FSS, Coppotelli was a Senior Managing Director with Kroll Associates Inc., advising public and private clients on public corruption, government, regulatory, and/or corporate investigations, financial and investigative due diligence, internal corporate controls and governance, and ethics policies. During his ten years at Kroll, his legal and investigative experience enabled him to be apointed to various independent ethics oversight positions by public and private clients and/or concerns, and to serve as an Independent Private Sector Inspector General on numerous high profile matters. His current practice concentrates in these areas, as well as in white-collar criminal defense.
Prior to joining Kroll, for thirteen years, Coppotelli was an Assistant District Attorney in the Manhattan District Attorney's Office, ending the last four years of his tenure as Chief of the Labor Racketeering Unit and Construction Industry Strike Force. Coppotelli also served as a Senior Investigative Counsel advising other investigative Assistant District Attorneys on investigative strategies, legal issues, and trial practice.
While chief, Coppotelli supervised the investigation into District Council 37, of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Union. The investigation secured the convictions of more than twenty-five union officials and nine corporations for grand larceny, scheme to defraud, and bribery. Coppotelli also supervised the racketeering and anti-trust indictments of eleven members of the Lucchese crime family, including the family's acting boss, two capos, eleven construction companies, and numerous union officials from Local 608 of the Northern Regional Council of the United States Brotherhood of Carpenters, Local 1 of the Builders and Allied Craftsmen, and Local 20 of the Laborers International Union. Coppotelli further supervised the investigation of New York State Senator Guy Velella for conspiracy to receive bribes for influencing the awarding of public contracts.
In addition to the above, Coppotelli directly handled the 1990s investigation into bid-rigging within the New York City interior construction industry, resulting in the commercial bribery convictions of six of the top ten metropolitan area interior general contracting companies, their principals, and over 40 architects, designers, project consultants, building managers, and real estate brokers. Coppotelli was also responsible for the investigation and conviction of the NYS Dormitory Authority's Chief of Court Projects, and his first assistant Project Manager, for laundering and stealing in excess of $500,000 from NYS through the rigging and inflation of numerous contracts on the Bronx Supreme Court, the Queens Supreme Court and Family Court, Staten Island Supreme Court, and the Manhattan Supreme Court buildings. Further, Coppotelli was the prosecutor who investigated the Fulton Fish Market, and secured the felony conviction of the head of International Fishmonger's Association.
- September 2008 - Independent Private Sector Inspector General of one of the largest interior construction general contractor in New York State
- Independent Election Monitor for the April 2006 and April 2009 general elections of Local 1 of the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry of the United States and Canada
- November 2005 - with the consent of the New York State Attorney General's Office - Independent Compliance Officer of the largest tobacco stamping agent and distributor in New York State
- January 2006 - with the consent of the Department of Justice. Anti-trust Division - Independent Compliance Monitor of the Facilities Operations department of the largest hospital in New York City
- June 2001 - appointed to Cushman & Wakefield, Inc.'s Global Integrity Committee
- June 2005 - Independent Private Sector Inspector General for selected work done by the largest demolition/excavation company in New York State
- Various times through 2002 through 2011 - Independent Private Sector Inspector General for selected work done by several large metropolitan area contractors.
Benjamin F. Scotti [Download VCard]
Benjamin F. Scotti joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP ("FSS") as an Associate in March 2009. Scotti graduated from Southern Methodist University in 2000 after receiving a B.B.A. in Accounting and a B.A. in Italian Area Studies. In 2003, Scotti recieved a JD from Loyola of Los Angeles Law School. While attending law school, Scotti served as a staff member of the Loyola of Los Angeles International & Comparative Law Review. He was eventually elected Chief Production Editor of the law review and was responsible for managing its article publication process. He also published a student comment entitled RICO vs. 416-bis: A Comparison of U.S. and Italian Anti-Organized Crime Legislation. After graduating, Scotti worked for over two years with a boutique real estate and litigation firm before accepting a judicial clerkship with the Honorable John E. Conway of the District of New Mexico. Once the two year clerkship ended in 2008, Scotti worked as an associate for Kaye Scholer in the law firm's Century City, California office before joining FSS in 2009.
Thomas O. Melvin [Download VCard]
Thomas O. Melvin joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP in April 2010 as an associate in the New York office. He received a B.A. from Georgetown University in 2002 and an M.Sc. from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2003. He received his law degree from the University of Notre Dame Law School in 2010, where he was a senior editor for the Journal of Legislation and was given the A. Harold Weber Award for outstanding achievement in the art of oral advocacy. Tom has worked at the New York City Council, the New York City Department of Education and the Washington, DC office of an international law firm. He was also a founding member of the Harlem Success Charter Schools and the Success Charter Network.
James R. Bucknam [Download VCard]
Jim Bucknam is a Special Advisor for Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP. Previously, Jim was the Executive Vice President for Risk Management and Compliance at Kroll. During his thirteen years with Kroll, Jim held a variety of other management and executive management positions and was also responsible for managing large-scale client assignments, including due diligence engagements, internal investigations and monitorships.
Before joining Kroll, Jim served for more than three years as the Senior Advisor to FBI Director Louis J. Freeh, advising him on numerous matters involving domestic and foreign law enforcement officials and government leaders. During that time, Jim traveled extensively and helped shape the FBI's efforts to enhance its foreign law enforcement presence. In 1994, he received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for coordinating multi-agency efforts in support of the Attorney General's Anti-Violent Crime Initiative.
Prior to working for Director Freeh, Jim served for six years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, where he gained broad experience in federal criminal investigations, trials, and appeals. For more than two of those years, Jim served as a supervisor, responsible for managing the Assistant United States Attorneys assigned to the Narcotics Unit.
Jim received his B.S.F.S. degree from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in 1983, and his Juris Doctor degree from the Marshall-Wythe School of Law, College of William and Mary, in 1986.
Jim Bucknam is also the President and Chief Executive Officer of Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC.
The Honorable Stanley Sporkin (Ret.) [Download VCard]
Judge Sporkin is a former partner at Weil, Gotshal, & Manges, LLP and recently retained as ombudsman to British Petroleum (North America). In addition, his extensive career path includes twenty years of dedicated service with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the last seven as Director of Enforcement, and five years as General Counsel to the CIA. Appointed by President Reagan as U.S. District Judge for the District of Columbia, Judge Sporkin presided over a number of very notable cases during his fourteen year tenure.
Judge Sporkin's awards and commendations include President's Award for Distinguished Federal Civilian Service. Current practice consists of corporate counseling in the area of securities and regulatory matters, mediation and arbitration services, and crisis management consultations. Judge Sporkin earned Certified Public Accountant certificate (inactive), attended Penn State University, and received his law degree from Yale University.