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Karen S. Smith


KAREN S. SMITH is an associate in the litigation practice in the Washington, D.C. office, where she represents clients in all phases of civil and criminal litigation, including enforcement actions, internal investigations, and trial court proceedings.

Ms. Smith has experience assisting clients in responding to investigations and enforcement proceedings initiated by federal and state law enforcement and regulatory agencies, including the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. She has investigated matters involving alleged violations of, among other things, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the False Claims Act, the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act, the federal anti-kickback statute, and federal securities laws and regulations. Ms. Smith’s practice also includes the representation of corporations and individuals in complex commercial litigation matters, including bankruptcy proceedings and cases involving allegations of fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract.

Ms. Smith also maintains an active pro bono practice. She has represented indigent clients in appeals before state and federal courts, including the United States Supreme Court. Ms. Smith successfully represented the respondent in Lafler v. Cooper, No. 10-209, in which the United States Supreme Court redefined the scope of defendants’ Sixth Amendment right to the effective assistance of counsel during plea bargaining.

Prior to joining the Firm, Ms. Smith served as a law clerk to the Honorable James S. Gwin of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. Ms. Smith graduated from Harvard Law School, where she was an Executive Editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. She received her B.A. in Economics cum laude from Harvard University.

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