Christopher M. Curran | White & Case LLP International Law Firm, Global Law Practice
Christopher Curran
Christopher Curran

Christopher M. Curran

Partner, Washington, DC

T +1 202 626 3643 / + 1 202 626 3600

E ccurran@whitecase.com

in LinkedIn profile

“Sources describe Christopher Curran as ‘a formidable adversary’ and [an] ‘extremely impressive’ trial lawyer.”

Chambers USA 2014

Overview

Christopher M. Curran is a trial and appellate lawyer based in the Firm's Washington office. He has consistently been recognized as a leading litigator for his notable work representing domestic and multinational clients in complex civil and criminal litigations. Chris has also successfully represented foreign sovereigns in federal actions, including the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the Government of Vietnam, the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Central Bank of Jordan.

He has won high-stakes verdicts and judgments in trial courts across the country, and has argued appeals in the District of Columbia, Second, Third, Fourth, Ninth, Eleventh and Federal Circuits, as well as in the United States Supreme Court. A significant part of his practice focuses on issues of international law and federal government regulation, particularly in the field of antitrust.

In addition to handling trial and appellate litigation, Chris regularly represents clients in connection with government investigations before federal bodies, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Defense, the International Trade Commission, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and Congressional committees.

Over the past three decades, Chris has gained extensive experience in the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. He has advised clients on the propriety of proposed conduct and on responding to questionable conduct by employees, has conducted internal investigations, and has helped companies to establish compliance practices and programs.

Chris served three three-year terms as Chairman on the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit's Advisory Committee on Admissions and Grievances.

Reflecting his exceptional work in the field, Chris was inducted into the American College of Trial Lawyers in 2014 – an honor extended by invitation to only the most experienced trial lawyers who have mastered the art of advocacy, and whose professional careers have been marked by the highest standards of ethical conduct, professionalism, civility and collegiality.

Bars and Courts

  • New York State Bar
  • District of Columbia Bar
  • US Supreme Court
  • US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • US District Court for the District of Columbia
  • US District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • US District Court for the Eastern District of New York
  • US District Court for the District of Maryland
  • US Court of Federal Claims

Education

  • JD, University of Pennsylvania Law School
  • BA, University of Virginia

Languages

  • English

Experience

Litigation victories in antitrust defense

As lead counsel, Chris devised a successful defense strategy as the case was set for trial in the Northern District of Illinois. On motions to dismiss and for summary judgment under the FTAIA, 99 percent of the plaintiff's claimed damages were summarily rejected. In 2014, the Seventh Circuit affirmed twice the district court's ruling.

Defense of Saudi bank in terrorism financing claim

Chris led the successful defense of a major Saudi bank, which was alleged to have financially supported terrorism. After winning a pre-trial dismissal of the US $1 billion claim in the Southern District of New York, Chris subsequently argued and won appeal in the Second Circuit in 2013. In 2014, the United States Supreme Court declined to entertain any further review, upholding the lower-court ruling.

Class action defense for electronics client

Acting as lead counsel, Chris successfully defended a class-action antitrust case concerning allegations of price fixing among electronics manufacturers. While the co-defendants settled, Chris devised a winning strategy that – after a six-week jury trial in 2013 – resulted in his client owing no damages, and their exoneration from all liability.

Multibillion-dollar antitrust defense

Chris led the team that successfully defended a client party to a multibillion-dollar antitrust case, which involved a seven-week jury trial in the Northern District of California.

Landmark US Supreme Court decision in arbitration case

Acting as lead counsel, Chris successfully defended an international shipping company in a multi-district litigation related to alleged price fixing. The litigation was precipitated by two landmark decisions, the first of which – in the Second Circuit in 2004 - compelled the arbitration of these claims. The second decision – in the US Supreme Court in 2010 – denied arbitration on class basis.

Libyan government defense

Acting as lead counsel for the Libyan Government, Chris was instrumental in the resolution of all US litigation against it under the US-Libyan Claims Settlement Agreement of 2008.

Federal criminal antitrust defense for shipping company

Acting as lead counsel in a month-long trial in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in 2007, Chris helped to achieve a favorable verdict for his corporate client in the shipping industry.

Patent litigation defense

Chris successfully defended a major antitrust action brought by the FTC against pharmaceutical manufacturers, relating to the settlement of patent litigation. After claiming a victory for the defense in a 40-day trial in 2002, Chris argued the Eleventh Circuit appeal, which upheld the trial verdict. Copycat private class actions are still pending in multidistrict litigation proceedings.

Price fixing and violation of US antitrust laws

Chris played a leading role in the successful defense of Asian rubber-thread manufacturers against criminal and civil allegations of price fixing in violation of US antitrust laws. Following extended grand jury proceedings, no indictment was brought. A US $100 million civil class action was defeated in 2002, after a jury ruled in favor of his client. Winning affirmation of the verdict in the Fourth Circuit, this case set an important precedent on the extraterritoriality of US antitrust laws.

Awards & Recognition

Litigation Trailblazer & Pioneer, National Law Journal, 2015

2014

Inducted into the American College of Trial Lawyers

Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America, Lawdragon, 2014

Listed

Competition MVP, Law 360, 2013

Litigator of the Week, The American Lawyer, 2013

Lawyer of the Year, Global Competition Review, 2013

finalist

"Visionary" of the DC Bar, The Legal Times, 2009