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Joe Cyr
Partner, New York
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joe.cyr@hoganlovells.com

Joe Cyr is a senior partner in our commercial litigation practice with broad experience in many areas, particularly complex international disputes. He has over 30 years of experience in all phases of litigation, including jury trials and appeals in U.S. state and federal courts. Joe has served as lead counsel in jury trials and in significant international arbitrations on behalf of some of the world's largest corporations and financial institutions.

Chambers USA ranks Joe as one of the leading commercial litigators in New York (2006-present). Joe formerly headed up Lovells' Litigation and Arbitration Practice in the United States.

Joe has devoted much of his practice to representing non-U.S. multinational corporations engaged in international transactions. He is frequently asked to appear on panels and make presentations on issues related to international litigation and arbitration, particularly on the extraterritorial application of U.S. laws and strategies for protecting the limited liability of non-U.S. multinational companies.

Joe's current practice is focused on representing multinational companies accused of aiding and abetting sovereign states in committing war crimes and other human rights violations. He also is currently handling significant consumer class actions, regulatory, and internal investigations and disputes involving product liability and the energy, telecommunications, and advertising industries.

REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE
  • Serving as primary outside counsel for a European based multinational energy company in defending executives against a state government investigation and possible prosecution for complicit liability for war crimes allegedly committed by an African state military.
  • Obtained summary judgment for Talisman Energy, a major energy company, sued in a class action on behalf of 300,000 southern Sudanese under the Alien Tort Statute for aiding and abetting the Government of Sudan in allegedly committing war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity while providing protection for an oil concession area in Southern Sudan. The landmark decision of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirming summary judgment set a high bar for such suits against multinational corporations.
  • Obtained dismissal of all the claims against Alibaba.com Inc., a large Chinese-based internet company, in an action brought under the Alien Tort Statute by several Chinese dissidents who alleged that through its affiliate, Yahoo! China, Alibaba.com unlawfully provided user information about them to the Chinese government, knowing that the government would use that information to arrest and torture them.
  • Lead trial counsel in obtaining high profile multimillion-dollar jury verdict and punitive damages on behalf of AXA against AIG in New York Federal Court.
  • Lead national counsel for the largest Chinese drywall manufacturer and affiliated companies in one of the largest and most highly publicized product liability matters in the United States. Clients are manufacturers and sellers of drywall products that allegedly emit noxious fumes, corrode household wiring and plumbing, and cause adverse health effects. Thousands of homeowners and other individuals have brought claims for damage to their property and to their health.
  • Obtained dismissal of all claims against Vodafone plc in the highly publicized product liability litigation against multiple wireless phone manufacturers and network providers wherein plaintiffs allege that they suffered brain cancer as a consequence of being exposed to radiation from their cellular phones.
  • Represented JPMorgan Chase in the multi-defendant Alien Tort Statute litigation wherein companies that formerly operated in Apartheid-era South Africa were accused of violations of international law.
  • Represented the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in asserting claims before the UN Compensation Commission in connection with Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.*
  • Represented the Open Society Initiative pro bono in conducting investigations of torture in Kazakhstan and in Kyrgyzstan and in preparing the appropriate submissions to UN committees.
  • Senior advisor to a major energy company regarding regulatory and litigation risks arising out of U.S. shale natural gas operations.
  • Lead counsel for many corporate defendants in securities and other consumer class actions, including the largest consumer class action in United States history.*
  • Represented Dartmouth College in a dispute challenging the largest bequest in its history.*
  • Lead trial counsel for Enron in obtaining successful defense verdict before a jury in New York Federal Court.*

*Matter handled prior to joining our legal practice.

RECENT PRESENTATIONS
2012
Presentation, “The Risks of Complicit Liability for Multinational Corporations Under the U.S.  Anti-terrorism Act.” New York, New York

2011
Speaker, “The Risks Of Liability for Directors and Officers Of Multinational Companies For Human Rights Violations and Corruption.” Paris

2011
Speaker, "Shale Natural Gas - Managing the Litigation Risks." Energy Dispute Resolution Conference, Calgary

2010
Speaker, "Shale Natural Gas - Managing the Litigation Risks." Energy Dispute Resolution Conference, Calgary

2010
Sponsored consultation for United Nations to share the perspective of multinational corporations with the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises in support of his ongoing mandate to provide guiding principles to sovereign states and their multinationals regarding the corporate responsibility to respect human rights, New York

2009
Presenter, "Multinational perspective on corporate responsibility and accountability." Annual International Law Weekend, New York
 
2009
Sponsor, Round Table Discussion for General Counsel on Corporate Social Responsibility, London

2009
Speaker, Energy Dispute Resolution Conference, Calgary

2004 - 2010
Numerous presentations on Toxic Tort, Human Rights, and Product Liability Litigation. Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the United States

2000 - 2010
Numerous presentations, "The liability of corporations for violations of international law and human rights." Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the United States

2000 - 2010
Numerous presentations, "The extraterritorial reach of U.S. courts and U.S. laws, including the Anti-terrorism Act, the Espionage Act, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the Alien Tort Statute and U.S. Securities Laws." Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the United States

Hogan Lovells Publications
April 2011 "Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights." Litigation Alert, Hogan Lovells

08 February 2011 "Second Circuit's rejection of corporate liability under the Alien Tort Statute stands." Energy Alert and Litigation Alert, Hogan Lovells

22 September 2010 "Hogan Lovells Litigation Alert: The Second Circuit rejects corporate liability under the Alien Tort Statute." Litigation Alert, Hogan Lovells

PRACTICES
Class Actions
Commercial Litigation
Product Liability
Energy
International Arbitration
INDUSTRY SECTORS
Energy and Natural Resources Group
Financial Institutions
Telecommunications
Energy Litigation and Arbitration
EDUCATION
J.D., summa cum laude, The George Washington University, 1980 M.S., The George Washington University, 1977 M.S., Pacific Lutheran University, 1976 B.S., United States Military Academy at West Point, 1973
MEMBERSHIPS
  • Captain, United States Army, 1973-1980
AWARDS / RANKINGS
  • Chambers Global, Dispute Resolution – Key Individual, 2010
  • Chambers USA, Litigation: General Commercial, 2006-2013 
BAR ADMISSIONS / QUALIFICATIONS New York