Crowell & Moring is expanding its False Claims Act, complex investigations, and litigation prowess with the addition of Preston Pugh, a former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of Illinois, former litigation and compliance investigations counsel at GE Healthcare, and three-time appointed compliance monitor. Pugh joins the firm’s Washington, D.C. office as a partner, serving on the steering committee of the firm’s False Claims Act practice, and will work across Crowell & Moring’s Government Contracts, White Collar and Regulatory Enforcement, Labor & Employment, and Health Care groups.
Pugh advises boards of directors, general counsel, and chief compliance officers on government-initiated and internal investigations; litigation that stems from those investigations; and crisis management, often in cases that have a high-profile employment component. He has a long track record of leading False Claims Act investigations and trials involving whistleblower claims, as well as matters involving procurement and government program fraud, health care fraud, and regulatory inspection incidents. Pugh also helps clients navigate alleged executive or key employee misconduct in the workplace, incidents involving workplace violence, insider threats, and trade secrets disputes. He was recently inducted into the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel, and is a longtime member of the National and American Bar associations.
Pugh is among a very small number of attorneys who have been appointed to serve as a monitor by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. His experience includes one of the largest monitorships to date involving racial discrimination and harassment. He was also the first monitor appointed by the Waterfront Commission of New York and New Jersey Harbors, overseeing a stevedore’s efforts to root out organized crime. Pugh currently serves as an appointed deputy monitor in the gaming industry, overseeing a company’s efforts to prevent, among other things, sexual harassment and discrimination. Pugh helped draft the American Bar Association’s first set of standards for corporate monitors, and is a member of the International Association of Independent Corporate Monitors.
“Preston’s government prosecutorial background and his deep knowledge and expertise in complex investigations and civil False Claims Act matters align perfectly with our platform,” said Philip T. Inglima, Crowell & Moring chair. “In addition, his experience as a monitor and the reputation he has established as a trusted advisor to corporations and institutions navigating high-stakes, sensitive matters will be of great benefit to our clients.”
Pugh served for a decade as part of the national faculty for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy and was previously an adjunct professor in appellate advocacy at Loyola University Chicago School of Law. He currently serves on the board of directors of JusticeAid, a non-profit organization that uses music and the arts to fund efforts to fight injustice and inequality and the Driving Force Group, a non-profit philanthropic advisory organization focused on social justice and race equity.
Pugh earned his undergraduate degree from Cornell University and his law degree from New York University School of Law. He joins the firm from Miller & Chevalier.
“I have worked alongside, and have been across the table from, Crowell & Moring lawyers for many years and have been consistently impressed with the firm’s client commitment and advocacy and overall excellence,” Pugh said. “I look forward to collaborating with my new colleagues to bring effective solutions and strategies to clients in this challenging business environment.”
His arrival coincides with that of partner Michael Shaheen, a former trial and investigations lawyer in the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Division Fraud Section, who recently joined the firm and complements Pugh’s significant False Claims Act experience. Shaheen advises clients navigating all manner of enforcement actions involving health care and procurement fraud.
About Crowell & Moring LLP
Crowell & Moring LLP is an international law firm with approximately 550 lawyers representing clients in litigation and arbitration, regulatory, and transactional matters. The firm is internationally recognized for its representation of Fortune 500 companies in high-stakes litigation, as well as its ongoing commitment to pro bono service and diversity. The firm has offices in Washington, D.C., New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orange County, London, and Brussels.