Winston adds N.Y. financial watchdog for white-collar, investigations group

Signage is seen outside of the legal offices of the Winston & Strawn law firm in Washington, D.C., U.S., May 10, 2021. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

(Reuters) - Chicago-founded law firm Winston & Strawn said Monday that it has hired the former general counsel for the New York State Department of Financial Services as a partner in New York.

Richard Weber will be a member of the firm's white collar, regulatory defense and investigations practice. He said he got connected to the firm through Suzanne Jaffe Bloom, a former colleague when the pair worked together in the U.S. attorney's office for the eastern district of New York, who now co-chairs the practice.

Weber said he will focus on anti-money laundering, Bank Secrecy Act, asset forfeiture and cyber-attack matters, along with regulatory and investigations work.

Before joining DFS in April 2020, Weber was a managing director and leader of financial crime prevention for both Deutsche Bank and UBS AG. Earlier in his career, he investigated financial crimes at various government agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service, the Manhattan District Attorney's Office and the U.S. Department of Justice.

While at the IRS, Weber oversaw investigations involving international soccer organization FIFA and the Silk Road internet black market. He also oversaw the IRS's Swiss Bank Program probe, with led to $1.36 billion in U.S. penalties from 80 Swiss banks, Winston said.

"Most of my experience has been working on international and global investigations and multi-jurisdictional, multi-agency cases," said Weber. "I am hoping to have a real expansive practice - hopefully across the globe."

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Chinekwu Osakwe covers legal industry news with a focus on midsize law firms. Reach her at Chinekwu.osakwe@thomsonreuters.com.