Thomas Firestone

Thomas Firestone

Partner
Baker & McKenzie LLP

Biography

Thomas Firestone represents clients in international white collar criminal investigations and compliance matters, including anti-corruption and US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), internal investigations and transactional due diligence. He is a member of the Firm's Global Compliance & Investigations Steering Committee. Prior to joining the Firm, Thomas spent 14 years at the US Department of Justice. He worked as an Assistant US Attorney in the Eastern District of New York where he prosecuted transnational organized crime cases. He also worked as Resident Legal Adviser and Acting Chief of the Law Enforcement Section at the US Embassy in Moscow. In the latter capacity, he facilitated US-Russian law enforcement cooperation, assisted the Russian government in drafting new criminal legislation, advised the US government on policy issues related to criminal justice in Russia and twice won the US State Department Superior Honor Award.

Practice Focus

Thomas represents multinational companies and individuals before the US Department of Justice, State Department, and other US and foreign agencies in connection with transnational criminal investigations, extradition proceedings and other sensitive matters in multiple international jurisdictions, including emerging and high risk markets He also regularly advises foreign governments on issues relating to anti-corruption and the rule of law, and has represented individuals in Interpol matters.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Served as adviser to a former prime minister of an East European country in the largest corruption case in the country’s history.
  • Obtained a declination from DOJ for an individual under investigation as an unregistered foreign agent in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).
  • Conducted internal investigations and risk assessments for US and European companies in various countries including Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
  • Obtained declinations from the DOJ for US companies in FCPA investigations into allegations of bribery in Nigeria and Kazakhstan.
  • Advised the governments of Romania and Ukraine on anti-corruption reforms.
  • Represented three Swiss banks in the US DOJ amnesty program.
  • Served as US support lawyer for European monitor in connection with Deferred Prosecution Agreement with DOJ.

Representative Matters with DOJ

  • Served as lead US prosecutor in the extradition of a Russian government official facing charges of money laundering.
  • Prosecuted a 30-defendant Eastern European organized crime case.
  • Prosecuted a 17-defendant Russian organized crime case.  

Professional Honors

  • Superior Honor Award, US Department of State, 2010 and 2004
  • Special Award for Advancing US-Russian Cooperation in Antitrust Enforcement, presented by Russian Federal Anti-Monopoly Service Director Igor Artemyev, 2010
  • Best Professor Award, Pericles American Business Law Education Project, Moscow, awarded for class on "Corporate and White Collar Crime," 2009-2010
  • American Bar Association Section of International Law Award for Best Stand-Alone Program, 'Resolution of Russia-Related Business Disputes: The Next Wave," September 2009
  • Outstanding Performance Award, US Department of Justice, 2008, 2009
  • Award for Advancing US-Russian Cooperation, Moscow Oblast Advocates Chamber, 2008

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • U.S.-Kyrgyzstan Business Council - Chairman
  • U.S.-Tajikistan Business Council - Secretary-Treasurer
  • America Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce - Board Member
  • EurasiaNet.Org - Member of Advisory Board
  • Ukrainian Commission to Select Head of Asset Recovery Office - Member
  • American Bar Association - Section of International Law, Vice-Chaiman, Russia/Eurasia Committee and International Criminal Law
  • Council on Foreign Relations - Member

Admissions

  • District of Columbia (2018)
  • New York (1994)

Education

  • Harvard Law School (J.D. cum laude) (1993)
  • University of California at Berkeley (M.A. Soviet & East European Politics) (1987)
  • Harvard College (B.A. Slavic Languages and Literature magna cum laude) (1986)
  • Varia Language School, Krakow, Poland (Certificate) (2016)
  • Varia Language School, Krakow, Poland (Certificate) (2015)
  • Rolang Romanian Language School, Bucharest, Romania (Certificate Intensive Summer Program) (2017)

Languages

  • English
  • Russian

Previous Offices

  • Moscow
  • London