Virginia Chavez Romano

Partner, New York


With extensive white collar government experience at the federal and state levels, Virginia Chavez Romano offers clients a comprehensive understanding of complex, high-stakes matters.


Virginia Chavez Romano's practice focuses on conducting internal investigations and representing companies and individuals before U.S. federal and state enforcement agencies.

Having spent 14 years in various prosecutorial roles, Virginia offers clients a unique perspective in navigating government investigations and enforcement proceedings, particularly those involving multiple agencies and jurisdictions.

Virginia was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, where she served as lead prosecutor in dozens of investigations and prosecutions, including many that involved international money laundering and complex financial crimes, and was a member of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force.

Virginia left the U.S. Attorney's Office in 2012 to join the New York State Attorney General's Office, where she served as Deputy Attorney General for the Economic Justice Division. In that capacity, Virginia supervised residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) investigations and litigations brought under the civil provisions of the Martin Act, and worked closely with enforcement attorneys at various state and federal agencies as part of the RMBS Working Group, one of several working groups of the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force established by President Obama in 2009.

In 2014, Virginia joined the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., where she was appointed to be both an Associate Deputy Attorney General and the new Executive Director of the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. In those roles, Virginia was instrumental in developing Department-wide initiatives relating to civil and criminal financial fraud, including the September 2015 policy memorandum titled "Individual Accountability for Corporate Wrongdoing," widely known as the Yates Memo.

Since joining White & Case, Virginia has concentrated on representing individual and corporate clients in connection with investigations brought by the DOJ, the SEC, the New York Attorney General’s Office, and the New York Department of Financial Services.

Bars and Courts
New York State Bar
Stanford Law School
Princeton University


Speaking Engagements

"The Expected and Unexpected Impact of U.S. v. Connolly: New Considerations for Handling Internal Investigations, Individual Prosecutions, De-Confliction and Other Government Requests," American Conference Institute, 36th International Conference on the FCPA, Washington, DC, December 2019.

"Case Studies on Resolving Ethical Dilemmas in the Context of FCPA Compliance, Investigations and Whistleblower Complaints," American Conference Institute, 34th International Conference on the FCPA, Washington, DC, November 2017

"Recent Developments in Securities Enforcement, Regulation and Litigation: What's Happening!" NERA's 16th Securities and Finance Summer Seminar, Park City, Utah, July 2016.

"The Relationship Between Individual and Corporate Liability," New York University School of Law Program on Corporate Compliance and Enforcement, New York, New York, April 2016.

"Enforcement Policy Governing Corporate and Individual Liability for Corporate Misconduct," New York University School of Law Program on Corporate Compliance and Enforcement, New York, New York, January 2016.