Matthew Jacobs

Vinson & Elkins LLP - San Francisco
555 Mission Street, Suite 2000
San Francisco, CA 94105

A former federal prosecutor in the Northern District of California with more than 25 years of experience, Matt is well recognized for his experience in internal investigations, government investigations, and white collar matters of all kinds, as well as complex commercial litigation.

Matt frequently advises Boards of Directors, Audit Committees, and General Counsels on critical issues. Matt is Co-Chair of the firm’s Government Investigations & White Collar Criminal Defense practice, and is the Managing Partner of the San Francisco office of V&E. He is Chambers-rated, ranked by the Legal 500, and has been recognized as one of the leading lawyers in San Francisco by San Francisco Magazine.

Matt has a national and international practice representing U.S. and foreign-located companies and executives in high stakes matters involving FCPA, antitrust, trade secrets, health care, and commercial disputes including IP litigation and consumer class actions. Matt is a seasoned trial lawyer who has tried more than a dozen criminal and civil cases to verdict. As a federal prosecutor in San Francisco, Matt prosecuted many high profile cases involving securities, health care and energy. Matt is particularly experienced in “bet-the-company” and high profile matters. He has extensive experience dealing with the press, first as an award winning journalist in Louisiana, and later as the federal prosecutor responsible for handling all media inquiries on behalf of U.S. Attorney (and former FBI Director) Robert S. Mueller III. As a prosecutor, Matt was the recipient of the Justice Department’s Director’s Award and the FBI’s Director’s Award. Matt is a legal commentator for news outlets relating to the Mueller investigation.

Matt has tremendous skill in conducting internal investigations and providing business-focused advice to companies, audit committees, and boards of directors regarding appropriate company practice in the midst of alleged misconduct. Matt’s background with the government, coupled with his depth of experience in both criminal and civil defense matters, enables him to deliver a unique, well-rounded approach to clients in need of innovative, yet practical and effective solutions.

Experience Highlights
Represents the Audit Committee of a public technology company in connection with criminal and civil investigations being conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC)

Represented a major Japanese manufacturer in an internal investigation and government investigation regarding an alleged cartel to fix the prices of certain parts

Represented a Silicon Valley company in contractual dispute with a major drug wholesaler concerning alleged HIPAA obligations

Represents a real estate developer in connection with bid rigging and mail fraud charges stemming from the purchase of properties through foreclosure auctions

Investigations (Criminal, Government, Internal)
Currently representing a Japanese corporation in connection with a U.S. Department of Justice investigation based on alleged cartel activity concerning a consumer product

Conducted internal investigation of FCPA compliance for a public multinational technology company regarding sales practices in the Middle East

Has conducted internal investigations of potential Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations around the world, including Russia, China, India, Angola, Nigeria, UAE, Hungary and Saudi Arabia

Represents various entities in a nationwide class action alleging collusion in the pricing of various auto parts stemming from one of the largest federal criminal antitrust investigations ever conducted by the DOJ

Leads an internal investigation into alleged bribery allegations regarding drilling technology in Africa

Currently representing a major Chinese corporation in connection with a U.S. Department of Justice criminal investigation into the alleged theft of manufacturing processes

Represents senior executives of pharmaceutical companies alleged to have engaged in improper off-label promotion of drugs

Conducted an investigation on behalf of a Board of Directors for financial manipulation of the company’s SEC filings which led to the forced resignation of the CEO of a public Silicon Valley company

Represents an executive of a generic pharmaceutical company in connection with a federal price fixing investigation

Currently representing a senior executive of a dialysis corporation in connection with alleged False Claims Act violations

Currently advising the former CEO of a technology company in connection with antitrust implications of an acquisition and a Department of Justice merger review

Represented several major international corporations in significant criminal investigations by the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Justice Department involving the consumer electronics business, which were resolved without criminal charges being filed against clients

Represented a senior executive of a pharmaceutical company who was the target of a federal criminal investigation for five years, and successfully persuaded the Department of Justice to close the case without taking action against the client

Represented a Special Committee of the Board of Directors of a publicly traded corporation in connection with a criminal investigation, and derivative and class action lawsuits stemming from the company’s stock options practices

Represented accountants from a Big Four accounting firm in connection with an international money laundering investigation

Represented the former partner of a major New York law firm in connection with a tax investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice

Represented various officers and directors of publicly traded companies in connection with investigations and derivative lawsuits of the stock options practices of those companies

Represented a major metals company in connection with a criminal environmental investigation under the Clean Air Act

Represented a former senior executive of an educational software company in connection with a federal bribery investigation regarding the supply of products to a public school district; the investigation was resolved without charges being brought against the client

Represented a publicly traded company in negotiating privilege issues in connection with the criminal trial of a former Chief Executive Officer

Conducted an internal investigation of alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by a Chinese subsidiary of a U.S. company

Commercial Litigation
Represents a major foreign manufacturer in a major class action that alleges collusion in direct and indirect sales of optical disk drives

Represents a Japanese corporation in a major class action that alleges price fixing in cellphone batteries

Currently representing a technology company in a lawsuit concerning the use of health care data

Represented officers and directors in several derivative and class actions regarding the handling of compensation issues

Represented major consumer electronic companies in class actions by direct and indirect purchases, where the class members alleged that they paid higher prices due to internal cartel activity

Represented a pharmaceutical company in connection with class action lawsuits based on alleged securities fraud

Represented a former officer of a health care company in the successful dismissal of a securities fraud lawsuit

Represented a cloud computing company in litigation with a competitor and customer in a copyright infringement lawsuit

Advised a Chinese company in connection with product liability cases alleging the misuse of their products resulted in deaths and injuries

Stanford Law School, J.D. 1992 (Order of the Coif; Associate Editor, Stanford Law Review)
Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism, M.S., with honors, 1985
The American University, B.A., cum laude, 1983

Professional Background
Appointed to federal Criminal Justice Act panel for the Northern District of California
Appointed by Chief U.S. District Judge to serve on selection committee for bankruptcy judge
Assistant United States Attorney for the Northern District of California, 1998-2004
Judicial clerk to The Honorable Walter J. Cummings, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, Chicago

Chambers USA, Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (California), 2015-2020
Legal 500 U.S., Antitrust, 2012-2015, 2018 and 2020; Corporate Investigations & White-Collar Criminal Defense, 2015-2020
Selected to the Northern California Super Lawyers list, Super Lawyers® (Thomson Reuters), 2006?2019
Finalist for appointment as U.S. Attorney, 2008
The Best Lawyers in America© (BL Rankings, LLC), Commercial Litigation, 2020
The National Trial Lawyers, Top 100 in Criminal Defense, 2020

Former Adjunct Professor: University of California, Berkeley School of Law (Prosecution and Defense of White Collar Crime)
Member and Former Chairman: Steering Committee of the Criminal Justice Panel, San Francisco Bar Association
Vice President: San Jose Steering Committee of Federal Bar Association
Barrister of McFettridge Inn of Court
Appointed to federal Criminal Justice Act panel for the Northern District of California
Appointed by Chief U.S. District Judge to serve on selection committee for bankruptcy judge
Former chair of Communications Committee and member of Standards Committee of Olympic Club, nation’s oldest athletic club

Admitted to Practice
Supreme Court of the United States
the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Seventh and Ninth Circuits

News & Insights
Caremark Director Liability Protections: Compliance Oversight Actions for Boards
Event RecapWednesday, June 24, 2020
The Expected and Unexpected Compliance Risks from the Coronavirus
Event RecapWednesday, June 17, 2020
The Legal 500 U.S. 2020 (Legalease, Ltd.) Recognizes V&E in 41 Practice Categories, With 181 Individual Lawyer Recommendations
Rankings & AwardsJune 16, 2020
Award-Winning Former Prosecutor, Compliance Officer Brings Uncommonly Varied Background to V&E
V&E+June 4, 2020
Chambers USA 2020 Recognizes V&E in 37 Practice Categories, with 109 Individual Lawyer Rankings
Rankings & AwardsApril 23, 2020
Make It a Federal Case: Associates Thrive in Criminal Justice Act Cases
V&E+April 14, 2020
2019 Energy and Chemicals Antitrust Report
InsightJanuary 15, 2020V&E Antitrust Update
Second Circuit Considers Reach of Bribery Laws Beyond U.S.
The V&E ReportNovember 13, 2019
Navigating a Government Investigation
Event RecapNovember 13, 2019
U.K.’s SFO Recognizes Expectation that Compliance Functions Will be Insulated from Routine Cost Cutting Pressures
The V&E ReportOctober 30, 2019
Don’t Get “Pulled-In”: Marvell Fined by SEC for Failing to Disclose Aggressive Sales Plan
The V&E ReportOctober 17, 2019
Because the Mafia Doesn’t Issue 8-Ks: DOJ Explains Recent Corporate Policy Changes and Foreshadows Additional Guidance
The V&E ReportSeptember 18, 2019
V&E Helps Secure Favorable FCPA Settlement For Juniper Networks
Deals & CasesSeptember 6, 2019Resolution of SEC Investigation Follows DOJ Decision to Decline Charges
Cisco’s $8.6 Million False Claims Act Settlement Signals Viability of Cybersecurity Claims Under the False Claims Act
The V&E ReportAugust 22, 2019
The Best Lawyers In America (BL Rankings, LLC) 2020 Lists 88 V&E Lawyers, 8 “Lawyers of the Year”
Rankings & AwardsAugust 15, 2019
Third Circuit Upholds Bribery Conviction Despite Narrowed Definition of “Official Act” Under McDonnell
The V&E ReportAugust 14, 2019
Winning the Leniency Race No Longer the Only Avenue for Avoiding Criminal Antitrust Prosecution
InsightJuly 15, 2019V&E Antitrust Update
Maybe It’s Real This Time: Mexico Fights Corruption
The V&E ReportJune 26, 2019
Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters) Names 2 V&E Attorneys to 2019 Northern California Super Lawyers List, 2 to Rising Stars
Rankings & AwardsJune 26, 2019
A New Day “Dawning”: Uptick in Dawn Raids by the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority
The V&E ReportJune 20, 2019
Supreme Court Extends the Statute of Limitations for Claims by Relators
The V&E ReportMay 31, 2019
The Legal 500 U.S. 2019 (Legalease, Ltd.) Recognizes V&E in 43 Practice Categories, With 184 Individual Lawyer Recommendations
Rankings & AwardsMay 30, 2019
Investigation Outsourcing: When Do Companies Become Arms of the State?
The V&E ReportMay 9, 2019
Recent Enforcement Trends: Healthcare and Life Sciences Sector
InsightMay 7, 2019V&E Government Investigations & White Collar Criminal Defense Update
Updated DOJ Guidance Provides Useful Roadmap for Implementing and Enhancing Corporate Compliance Programs
The V&E ReportMay 2, 2019
History Repeats Itself: Mueller Investigation Spurs Renewed DOJ Focus on WWII Era Foreign Agents Registration Act
The V&E ReportApril 25, 2019
Chambers USA 2019 Recognizes V&E in 34 Practice Categories, with 101 Individual Lawyer Rankings
Rankings & AwardsApril 25, 2019
Government’s Filing of Complaint Against Private Equity Company Signals New Focus on Private Equity and Other Investors
The V&E ReportApril 24, 2019
DENIED: SCOTUS Denies Cert. in Mueller’s Mystery Case
The V&E ReportMarch 27, 2019
Giving Credit Where Credit is Due: University’s False Claims Act Settlement Highlights Importance of Proper Accounting Practices for Federal Award Recipients
The V&E ReportMarch 27, 2019
DOJ Updates FCPA Cooperation Credit Policy for M&A
The V&E ReportMarch 20, 2019
Recent FCPA Speeches Highlight and Defend DOJ Priorities
The V&E ReportMarch 14, 2019
Insufficient Evidence Leads to Former Barclays Trader’s Acquittal Without a Jury
The V&E ReportMarch 13, 2019
Beware the Middle Man: 3 Things to Consider When Partnering With a Foreign Third-Party Agent
V&E+March 12, 2019
CFTC Announces New Enforcement Advisory Relating to Foreign Corrupt Practices
The V&E ReportMarch 7, 2019
DOJ is “Swinging for the Fences” in Expanding Traditional Industry Focus
The V&E ReportMarch 5, 2019
Recent Enforcement Trends: Technology Sector
InsightFebruary 20, 2019V&E Government Investigations & White Collar Criminal Defense Update
2018 False Claims Act and Whistleblower Developments
The V&E ReportFebruary 20, 2019
10 Risk Areas For Companies Operating Internationally
InsightFebruary 8, 2019V&E FCPA Update
A Blueprint for Navigating a Government Investigation
Event RecapWednesday, November 13, 2019
2018 Energy and Chemicals Antitrust Report
InsightJanuary 7, 2019V&E Antitrust Update
Jury Convicts on Both Bites at the Apple in FCPA Case
InsightDecember 14, 2018V&E FCPA and Global Anti-Corruption Update
DOJ’s Spotlight on China May Shed Light on More than Intended
The V&E ReportDecember 5, 2018
DOJ Announces Revised Policy Reflecting Move Away from Yates Memo
The V&E ReportDecember 4, 2018
Walmart Discounts Prior Investigation, Pays Big
The V&E ReportDecember 4, 2018
The Democrats Retake the House: Understanding the Impact for Congressional Investigations
The V&E ReportNovember 9, 2018
“Company, Monitor Thyself”: DOJ Announces New Policy on the Use of Corporate Monitors
The V&E ReportOctober 18, 2018
Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters) Recognizes 2 V&E Attorneys in 2018 Northern California Guide
Rankings & AwardsJuly 10, 2018
Chambers USA 2018 Recognizes 79 V&E Attorneys in 38 Practice Areas
Rankings & AwardsMay 9, 2018
Supreme Court Curbs SEC’s Disgorgement Power: Holds That the SEC Can’t Escape the SOL
InsightJune 14, 2017V&E FCPA & Global Anti-Corruption Update E-communication

Additional Insights
“36th International Conference on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act,” December 4, 2019 (speaker)
“Satisfying Fiduciary Obligations to Investigate Without Breaking the Bank,” NACD Northern California Chapter Private Dinner with VE, April 18, 2019 (speaker)
“FCPA Enforcement and Multi-Jurisdictional Coordination: Key Updates on Evolving Policies, Priorities and Expectations,” 13th Forum on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Houston Hosted by American Conference Institute ACI, January 30, 2019 (moderator)
“Preparing for and Managing Risks Involved with Cross-Border Investigations,” V&E Houston Office, September 20, 2018 (panelist)
“How to Stay Out of Federal Prison, and Other Helpful Tips,” May 16, 2018 (speaker)
“What You Don’t Know About Competition Law Can Hurt You: An Update on Key Antitrust Issues,” V&E Houston Office, December 5, 2017 (speaker)
“Pilot Program No Longer: DOJ Makes FCPA Pilot Program Permanent Policy,” V&E FCPA & Global Anti-Corruption Update E-communication, November 30, 2017 (co-author)
“Expectations vs. Reality of the Pilot Program One Year Later: How Companies are Changing Their Approach to Voluntary Self-Disclosure and How this is Affecting the Outcome of Investigations,” 10th West Coast Conference on FCPA Enforcement and Compliance, September 26, 2017 (panelist)
“Annual SEC DOJ Enforcement 2017 Update,” June 6, 2017 (speaker)
“The DOJ and SEC’s New Tough Love Program for Corporations and Executives,” V&E Client Presentation, June 3, 2016 (co-presenter)
“Best Practices for Managing Government and Internal Investigations,” September 18, 2015 (co-presenter)
“Dangerous Curves Ahead: Companion Regulatory Probes,” Law360, January 14, 2014
“DOJ Foreign FCPA Efforts: Antitrust and Compliance,” Ethisphere presentation, November 28, 2012 (co-presenter)
“Supreme Court Rules that Sixth Amendment Jury-Trial Protection Applies to Criminal Fines: Factors that Enhance a Fine Beyond the Statutory Maximum Must be Proved Beyond a Reasonable Doubt,” V&E Litigation Update E-communication, July 11, 2012 (co-author)
“Chinese Vitamin C Producer Becomes the First Chinese Company to Settle a U.S. Cartel Class Action Case,” V&E Insights E-communication, May 30, 2012 (co-author)