Robert protects companies’ most valued assets by either avoiding litigation through developing policies and practices tailored to keep intellectual property and information safe from theft, or in pursuing or defending litigation involving those assets. He handles small disputes, as well as significant, bet-the-company litigation and is a results-oriented litigator who works efficiently, effectively and proactively for clients.

Robert has practiced complex commercial litigation, with a focus on unfair competition, trade secret misappropriation and intellectual property, for many years in a wide variety of industries. He takes a practical, hands-on approach in the cases he oversees, and brings a unique understanding to the practice based on his previous experience as a law clerk for a federal judge and as a deputy public defender. Robert began his career representing companies and individuals in corporate investigations and before government regulators, and has significant expertise in advising clients on best practices in compliance and internal investigations.

Before joining the firm, Robert practiced for more than seven years at an AmLaw 100 firm, where he was a member of the litigation group and white collar and corporate investigations practice, and co­chair of the firm’s Attorney Development Committee.

Currently serving on the Board of OneJustice, a legal services organization, Robert has also dedicated a significant amount of time to giving back to the community, and has handled numerous pro bono cases. He has also served in the community with professional distinction, most currently as a Barrister in the McFetridge American Inn of Court, and previously as the Chair of the Leadership Development Committee for the Association of Business Trial Lawyers.

Products Liability Litigation and Supply Chain Disputes

Robert has represented various product manufacturers in both individual and class action claims related to product liability issues, and has also handled international disputes concerning supply and manufacturing. He has counseled clients concerning supply chain management, and has effectively drafted and revised development and supply agreements for clients to avoid supply chain disputes and minimize product liability litigation.

Unfair Competition and Trade Secret Misappropriation

Robert has represented numerous clients in unfair competition and trade secret matters on both the plaintiff and defense side. He has also counseled clients on developing practices, policies and procedures designed to protect companies’ most valuable assets.

Technology, Intellectual Property and Licensing

Robert has represented clients in litigation and pre-litigation dispute resolution concerning intellectual property including trademark infringement, copyright infringement and licensing disputes.

Compliance and Investigations

Robert has handled internal investigations on behalf of Board committees and management, and has represented companies and individuals in matters pending before the Securities Exchange Commission and United States Attorney’s Office involving fraud, price fixing and other issues. He has also assisted companies in developing compliance procedures to avoid future investigations.

Award Mouse thought multimedia interface book medal screen monitor

Unfair Competition and Trade Secret Misappropriation

  • Representing a multinational environmental engineering company in a complex trade secret and unfair competition case in federal court, resulting in a successful multimillion-dollar settlement.
  • Obtaining a dismissal of a business dispute involving complex claims, including French law, on behalf of a major manufacturer of high-end audio products.
  • Representing publicly-traded company in the handling of unfair competition claims pending in multiple states, including through trial.
  • Representing a Fortune 500 company in a significant trade secrets case against a competitor, resulting in a favorable settlement.

Intellectual Property and Technology

  • Obtaining a trial victory, affirmed by the Delaware Supreme Court, in a US$60 million licensing dispute for a Fortune 500 technology company in actions proceeding simultaneously in Delaware and California, including obtaining an injunction against further proceedings in California.
  • Representing multiple companies in trademark, trade dress, copyright and intellectual property disputes.
  • Representing a client in the shutdown of a patent infringement action before it could get off the ground, resulting in an early dismissal.
  • Representing a client in an arbitration involving a royalty dispute regarding software licensing.

Compliance and Investigations

  • Representing a company in an investigation and prosecution by the Department of Justice of an individual who stole company trade secrets and took them to a competitor.
  • Representing the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors of a large company in investigation by the Securities Exchange Commission and Department of Justice, as well as in subsequent class actions and derivative litigation.
  • Representing a Special Committee of the Board of Directors in an investigation concerning alleged fraud related to stock options backdating.
  • Representing the Audit Committee of a company before the Securities Exchange Commission in a fraud investigation related to a reverse merger involving a Chinese corporation.
  • Representing an executive of a Japanese company in a large scale Department of Justice antitrust investigation into alleged price fixing.

Complex Commercial Litigation

  • Arbitrating a contract dispute between two of the nation’s largest oil companies, resulting in a favorable settlement.
  • Obtaining a favorable judgment in California state court in a securities case involving claims of breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Representing a client in a derivative action in California, resulting in a favorable settlement.
  • Serving as first chair in a victory in an arbitration filed by a client’s former employee.
  • Obtaining a victory in a securities class action alleging claims of breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Litigating a federal class action against an energy company which was resolved in the client’s favor.
  • Obtaining a favorable settlement in a wage and hour class action in California state court.
  • Defending a Fortune 100 telecommunications company in a consumer class action alleging claims of false advertising.
  • Shutting down a nationwide consumer class action in federal court at the pleading stage.

Education

  • University of California, Hastings College of Law, J.D., cum laude
  • Tufts University, B.A.

Admissions

  • California

Courts

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Ct. of App., Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist. of California
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., S. Dist. of California
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., E. Dist. of California
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., C. Dist. of California
  • Member of the Board of Directors, OneJustice
  • Barrister, Edward J. McFetridge American Inn of Court
  • Past chair of the Leadership Development Committee for the Association of Business Trial Lawyers, Northern California Chapter
  • Served as a Deputy Public Defender during a secondment to the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office in 2010
  • Law clerk to the Honorable Bernard Zimmerman, United States Magistrate Judge, Northern District of California
  • Extern with the Honorable Marilyn Hall Patel, during her tenure as Chief Judge of the Northern District and the Honorable Elizabeth D. Laporte

{{insights.date}} {{insights.source}} {{insights.type}}
{{blog.displayDate}}
{{blog.title}} {{blog.source}}

  • Co-author, "Protecting Trade Secrets in an Era of Increased Scrutiny," The Recorder, July 20, 2015.
  • Author, “Consenting to Magistrate Judge Jurisdiction in the Northern District of California,” ABTL Report, Northern California, Vol. 21, No. 2, pages 3-5, 2012.
  • Co-author, “Commercial Bribery: What GCs Should Know About the Achilles Heel of Anti­Bribery Law,” 2012.
  • Presenter, “Effective Handling and Production of Documents (Don’t Step in It),” 2011.
  • Presenter, “Internal Investigations: Best Practices and Pitfalls,” 2010.
  • Moderator, “Ask the Judges,” ABTL LDC, 2009.
  • Presenter, “Lessons Learned from Stock Options Investigations,” 2008.
  • Presenter, “Stock Options: Looking Back and Moving Forward,” 2007.

Award Mouse thought multimedia interface book medal screen monitor