Bingham expands international securities practice

Marcia Coyle / Staff Reporter

National Law Journal

May 14, 2008

WASHINGTON - Bingham McCutchen has expanded its international securities and commodities enforcement practice with the addition of four lawyers - two partners and two of counsel - to the firm's Washington office.

The new Bingham partners include Geoffrey F. Aronow, former enforcement director of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and former managing shareholder of Heller Ehrman's Washington office, and Margaret Blake, formerly of Winston & Strawn in Washington. Joining as of counsel are Joseph Brady, former associate general counsel at the North American Securities Administrators Association Inc. (NASAA), and Timothy B. Nagy, formerly with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Department of Regulation.

Bingham's securities area includes 125 lawyers from the broker-dealer, investment management, U.K. financial regulatory, securities litigation and Japan financial regulatory practice groups. The groups work together to offer clients a fully integrated set of legal services focused on securities law and regulation.

Aronow, director of enforcement at the CFTC from 1995 to 1999, expands Bingham's strength in commodities regulation, at a time when many fund and institutional investor clients are expanding their investment horizons beyond traditional financial instruments. He has served on the National Adjudicatory Council of NASD (now FINRA), which hears the appeals of all of that SRO's disciplinary and enforcement proceedings.

His practice focuses on government enforcement actions, including proceedings at the Securities and Exchange Commission, the CFTC, and other regulatory agencies and self-regulatory organizations. He has represented clients in numerous enforcement investigations and proceedings and has litigated several complex securities class-actions. He has been involved in legislative work on major legislation in the financial regulatory area, including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act.

Blake has extensive experience in helping foreign financial institutions and other non-U.S. clients navigate the U.S. regulatory system. Before entering private practice, Blake worked in the Division of Trading and Markets at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, initially as an attorney-adviser in the Office of Risk Management and Control, and later as special counsel in the Office of Market Supervision.

Brady enhances Bingham's state securities regulatory practice. At NASAA, he was the primary attorney supporting state securities commissions across the country on all matters involving broker dealers and investment advisers.

Prior to joining Bingham, Nagy spent nine years in FINRA's Department of Market Regulation, where he represented the department in disciplinary hearings and appellate proceedings. He counseled and advised FINRA staff on all facets of the FINRA regulatory scheme, including regulatory sweeps, investigations and examinations.

In April, Bingham added partner Takayasu Koga from the Japanese Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission to the firm's Tokyo office. Bingham also has a financial regulatory practice in London, anchored by Peter Bibby and Helen Marshall, both of whom were heads of enforcement at the U.K. Financial Services Authority. Christopher Leonard, a former vice president and senior European counsel at State Street Global Advisors, joined the firm's London office in June and brings additional investment management experience to clients in the United Kingdom.

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