Risk Update

Lawyer Conflicts Controversy (Or Controversial Conflicts) — Elon Musk Causes Conflicts, Trump Electors Draw DQ Motions

Lawyers Lose Out on Millions in Twitter-Musk Legal Fees” —

  • “Not everyone’s a winner in Elon Musk’s decision to go through with the Twitter Inc. deal.”
  • “More than 70 lawyers were admitted to Delaware Chancery Court to represent various parties in the case — about 30 for Twitter, most of them from Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, the most profitable firm in the country, and about 20 for Musk from firms including Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP.”
  • “Since Musk is involved in a myriad of businesses, he’s created some conflict-of-interest problems among lawyers over the years.”
  • “In the Twitter fight, both Musk’s main Delaware lawyers from Skadden Arps and Twitter’s lead firm, Wachtell, had to hire so-called conflict counsel to put out subpoenas to parties they’d represented in the past, according to court filings.”
    “For the Musk side, conflict counsel was the law firm of Chipman Brown Cicero & Cole LLP. For Twitter it was the Delaware office of Ballard Spahr LLP and the local law firm of Kobre & Kim LLP.”

Fulton County asks judge to disqualify lawyers for 11 alternative electors” —

  • “Fulton County prosecutors examining efforts to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia are trying to disqualify a pair of lawyers representing 11 alternative electors in the special grand jury’s crosshairs.”
  • “In a partially redacted motion to disqualify attorneys Holly Pierson and Kimberly Bourroughs Debrow, Fulton County argued their representation was ‘rife with serious ethical problems.’ Many details of the rationale for the petition were redacted, but the lawyers appear to have ties to the state GOP. “
  • “‘Should Pierson and Debrow be allowed to continue in their representation of even just one of the 11, there is a serious possibility of future ethical problems concerning confidentiality of information obtained in the course of their representation thus far,’ prosecutors wrote in a 20-page motion filed on Monday.”
  • “Fulton County prosecutors laid out 12 ‘facts that are material to demonstrating a conflict of interest’ — all but two of which were redacted. The points that were left visible noted that one of the 11 alternative electors, David Shafer, serves as the head of the state GOP and that another, Shawn Still, served as the secretary of the Georgia GOP.”
  • “While the filing redacted key parts of its rationale, recent reporting from Yahoo indicated both Pierson and Debrow have done work for the state Republican Party. Campaign finance filings showed the state GOP paid the two lawyers $35,419 last July, per the report.”
  • “Prosecutors for Fulton County are imploring the court to bar the two lawyers ‘from any further participation in this matter.’ This marks a flip from August, when Pierson and Debrow prodded a court to disqualify Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis from the investigation due to her attendance at a fundraiser for a political rival of state Sen. Burt Jones, one of the ‘fake electors’ being targeted.”
  • “Allies of Trump sought to use the existence of the alternative electors to sow confusion about the 2020 election and justify calls for Vice President Mike Pence to decertify the election.”