James G. McGovern

James G. McGovern

New York

Email [email protected]​hoganlovells.com

Phone +1 212 918 3220

Fax +1 212 918 3100

Practice groupLitigation, Arbitration, and Employment

A tremendous trial lawyer and a dynamic courtroom presence.

Chambers USA, 2020

With more than 25 years of federal and state courtroom experience, in both New York and Washington, D.C., Jim McGovern defends corporations and their executives in criminal and civil investigations brought by the Department of Justice (DOJ), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), UK's Serious Fraud Office, New York Attorney General's Office, New York County District Attorney's Office, and New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS).

He conducts internal investigations for companies and counsels boards of directors concerning regulatory compliance, crisis response, and media relations. His experience includes Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Bank Secrecy Act, financial fraud, insider trading, antitrust, sanctions, money laundering, and cybersecurity investigations.

Jim previously served as the Chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York, where he supervised several major bank investigations and the FIFA prosecutions; he previously supervised the EDNY's Business and Securities Fraud Section. He also served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Washington, D.C., and as an Assistant District Attorney in New York City. Having conducted more than 70 criminal and civil jury trials, Jim is well-equipped to represent companies and individuals in investigations involving government enforcement issues, such as criminal, civil, and regulatory compliance.

In 2015, Jim received the DOJ's Director's Award for Superior Performance by an Assistant U.S. Attorney; in 2013, he received the New York Police Department Detective's Endowment Association's "Person of the Year" and the Federal Law Enforcement Foundation's "Prosecutor of the Year" awards; and, in 2016, he received the Exceptional Service Award presented by the National Association of Former U.S. Attorneys. In 2017, Jim was selected by The American Lawyer for inclusion in its list of "Lateral All Stars."

Awards and recognitions


Dispute Resolution: Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense
Legal 500 US


Lateral All-Star
The American Lawyer


Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (New York)
Chambers USA

Education and admissions


J.D., The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law, 1991

B.A., Siena College, 1988

Bar admissions and qualifications

New York

Court admissions

U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit

U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York

U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York

Representative experience

Obtained acquittals after trial and full dismissal of all charges in two indictments brought against a former New York State Assemblyman charged with numerous counts of bribery and fraud.

Appointed Deputy Commissioner by the City of New York to conduct whistleblower investigation of sitting NYC Commissioner of Department of Investigation.

Representing a state government in DOJ investigation of COVID-19-related fraud.

Representing publicly traded Brazilian company in DOJ international securities fraud investigation.

Represented Mexican state-owned oil company in DOJ/EDNY FCPA investigation arising out of the Brazilian corruption scandals.

Representing global bank in DOJ investigation of fraud and sanctions violations committed by a multinational telecommunications company.

Representing multinational pharmaceutical company senior executive in FCPA investigation stemming from allegations of bribery and corruption in Greece.

Representing four senior executives of Chinese state-owned construction company in DOJ/EDNY FCPA investigation.

Advised privately held multinational corporation concerning criminal exposure under the FCPA for corrupt acts committed by its employees in Central America.

Represented numerous individuals in sprawling federal investigation of political corruption targeting the Mayor of New York City.

Representing New York-based university and several professors in DOJ investigation of possible violations of export control regulations.

Obtained rare DOJ/EPA declination of charges for safety-monitoring company after whistleblower alleged unsafe conditions and fraud.

Obtained favorable settlement – with minimal fine and no admission of guilt – in SEC case against owner of cryptocurrency trading platform for violations of the 1934 Securities Exchange Act.

Representing several large public accounting firm partners in DOJ and SEC's investigation of theft of PCAOB's proprietary information.

Representing Singaporean company in DOJ sanctions investigation of alleged business transactions with North Korea.

Represented Korean oil company in DOJ Antitrust Division investigation of bid-rigging in dealings with the U.S. government.

Represented U.S.-based canned tuna company in price-fixing investigation conducted by the DOJ Antitrust Division.

Represented major U.S. bank in investigation conducted by Fraud Section of the DOJ concerning transactions with high-profile hedge fund manager.

Represented CEO of large New York-based financial institution in investigation conducted by NYDFS.

Qualified as an expert and testified in UK extradition proceeding regarding the DOJ's policies and procedures in misbranded pharmaceuticals case.

Representing CEO of consulting company in investigation conducted by the DOJ's Civil Division.

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