William J. Linklater

Baker & McKenzie LLP


William J. Linklater has been named among The Best Lawyers in America, The International Who’s Who of Business Crime Lawyers and The World’s Leading White Collar Crime Lawyers. He is also listed in Superlawyers, Chambers Global and Chambers USA. He served as president of the Chicago Bar Association, and is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and American Board of Criminal Lawyers. Mr. Linklater founded the Committee on International Criminal Law, ABA Criminal Justice Section, and served as member of the International Cartels Task Force, ABA Section of Antitrust Law.

Practice Focus

Mr. Linklater concentrates on defending individuals and multinational companies — as well as their officers and directors — in international criminal cases and complex civil litigation. He has unique experience investigating and defending international cartel cases and FCPA cases, export and import crimes, and other criminal law violations, and related civil and administrative proceedings. Mr. Linklater, who was counsel for the directors in In re: Caremark International Inc. Derivative Litigation, 698 A. 2d 959, 1996 Del. Ch. LEXIS 125, also advises corporations and their board of directors on internal investigations and corporate governance.

Representative Legal Matters

Most of Mr. Linklater's matters are highly confidential criminal matters and many are resolved without public charges. Recent cases include the following:

  • Investigation, defense and successful resolution of global FCPA investigations for multinational companies;

  • Successful defense of FCPA charges against the general counsel of a public company;

  • Successful defense of antitrust charges brought against corporate executives, including the CEO of a major auction house;

  • Investigation and defense of antitrust charges involving an international transportation company;

  • Representation of the board of a public company faced with multiple international cartel prosecutions;

  • Defense of a corporate executive accused of making illegal shipments to a Middle Eastern country in violation of US trade embargo.

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • California State Bar Association
  • Colorado Bar Association
  • Wyoming Bar Association
  • Chicago Bar Association - Past President
  • Seventh Circuit Bar Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • American Bar Association - Criminal Justice Section, White Collar Crime Committee
  • American Board of Criminal Lawyers - Fellow
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • The Chicago Inn of Court - Master
  • The Wong Sun Society of San Francisco - International Proctor
  • The Best Lawyers in America
  • Chambers USA America's Leading Business Lawyers
  • Chambers Global Guide to the World's Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Euromoney Guide to the World's Leading White Collar Crime Lawyers
  • Who's Who Among American Lawyers
  • International Who's Who of Business Crime Lawyers
  • Euromoney Guide to the World's Leading Competition and Antitrust Lawyers
  • American College of Trial Lawyers - Access to Justice and Legal Services Committee - Member (2008-2013)


  • Wyoming~United States (2005)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit~United States (1999)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit~United States (1999)
  • U.S. District Court, District of Hawaii~United States (1992)
  • Colorado~United States (1990)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit~United States (1990)
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan~United States (1989)
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California~United States (1983)
  • U.S. Tax Court~United States (1982)
  • California~United States (1981)
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of Calif.~United States (1981)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit~United States (1978)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit~United States (1971)
  • U.S. Supreme Court~United States (1971)
  • Illinois~United States (1968)
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois~United States (1968)


  • Loyola University Chicago School of Law (J.D.) (1968)
  • University of Notre Dame (B.A.) (1964)


  • English