Christopher L. Garcia is a partner in the firm’s Securities Litigation and White Collar Defense and Investigations practices, where he focuses on defending companies and individuals in connection with regulatory and criminal investigations, conducting internal investigations, and litigating securities class actions in state and federal courts across the US. He also counsels boards of directors, executives, broker-dealers, and investment advisers on securities and corporate governance issues, and regulatory compliance, among other things.
Currently, Mr. Garcia represents numerous confidential clients in connection with alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA); a former senior trader at a major financial institution in connection with the DOJ’s ongoing criminal investigation into alleged manipulation of LIBOR; a former senior director at another major financial institution in connection with a CFTC investigation into alleged manipulation of ISDAFix, the benchmark rate for the swaps market; and a confidential client in connection with an investigation of alleged price fixing in the market for oil futures and other energy derivatives. Since joining Weil, Mr. Garcia has also represented General Electric Company and several of its senior officers in connection with securities class action litigation in the Southern District of New York relating to statements made concerning GE’s dividend, access to the commercial paper markets, and exposure to subprime and noninvestment grade debt. Mr. Garcia also represents Aeropostale, Inc. in connection with a securities class action, also in the Southern District of New York, alleging misstatements by senior officers of the company concerning earnings. Other representative clients include Morgan Stanley, Barclays, AIG, DirecTV, and Optimer Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Prior to joining Weil, Mr. Garcia was Chief of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force in the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. In this role, he led a unit of more than 35 prosecutors, law enforcement agents, and staff in all aspects of securities fraud investigations, trials, appeals, and other litigations, including those The New York Times highlighted as underpinning “the government’s widespread crackdown on insider trading on Wall Street.” During his tenure, Mr. Garcia supervised the investigation and prosecution of more than 300 cases, including matters arising out of the 2008 financial crisis and in areas of corporate fraud, insider trading, fraudulent investment schemes, and FCPA. In addition, Mr. Garcia personally handled a high profile investigation of an entity responsible for structuring fraudulent tax shelters and helped negotiate a resolution of that matter that resulted in approximately $554 million in forfeiture and penalties. He also personally conducted ten federal jury trials and successfully litigated numerous appeals.
As a prosecutor, Mr. Garcia received numerous awards, including the DOJ’s Director’s Award for Superior Performance for having successfully convicted, after trial, Refco’s past president and former owner, Tone N. Grant. Mr. Garcia also received several awards for his work in helping forfeit more than approximately $8 billion dollars in connection with various cases. Since joining Weil, Mr. Garcia has likewise obtained a number of awards from legal and business publications. In 2013, he was recognized as a recommended lawyer in the Securities Litigation and White Collar areas by Legal 500 US, featured as one of 12 “Rising Stars” nationwide by the Minority Corporate Counsel Association in Diversity & The Bar, selected by Law360 as one of five “Rising Stars” nationwide in the White Collar area, and recognized by New York Law Journal as one of 44 “Rising Stars” in New York. Most recently, he was recognized by Ethisphere as one of seven “Up and Comers” nationwide in the publication’s “Attorneys Who Matter” list, which represents the “best and brightest in the legal field.”
Mr. Garcia is a fixture in the academic and legal community. He is a regular speaker and writer on securities litigation, enforcement, and white collar topics, including cybersecurity, Social Media communications and related SEC disclosure issues, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and anti-corruption enforcement, and insider trading. He has been a featured speaker at events coordinated by Bloomberg/Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Practising Law Institute, the New York City Bar Association, the American Bar Association, FINRA, SIFMA, and governmental agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice. He also has been featured in Bloomberg, Forbes, and Reuters, among other publications.
Mr. Garcia is Chair of the New York Regional Committee of the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Criminal Justice Section’s White Collar Crime Committee, and Co-Chair of the Securities Fraud Sub-Committee of the ABA’s Business Law Section. He also is a member of the Federal Bar Council’s Membership Committee. Mr. Garcia is a member of the bars of New York and Massachusetts and is admitted to practice in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the US District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York.
Mr. Garcia received his law degree from Harvard Law School, where he served as Senior Editor of the Journal of Law and Public Policy and as President of the Board of Student Advisers. He also received his A.B., magna cum laude, from Harvard College.