Case Dismissed: Crowell & Moring Client and Former Reliant Energy Executive Receives Indictment Dismissal from U.S. District Court in San Francisco
Dismissal Subject to Terms of a Deferred Prosecution Agreement
Washington, D.C. - March 7, 2007: Crowell & Moring LLP client V. Reginald Howard II, the former Reliant Energy West Power Trading Director, has resolved a pending indictment. The case was dismissed subject to the fulfillment of terms outlined in a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA) with the U.S. Attorney's Office in San Francisco. Yesterday, Howard along with three other individuals and his former employer, Reliant Energy Services, Inc., resolved the case with Reliant's entry of a DPA, and a separate, similar DPA entered by all four individuals with the U.S. District Court in San Francisco (NDCA). The indictment related to allegations pertaining to an electricity trading incident that occurred on two days in June 2000. The dismissal order was signed yesterday by Chief Judge Vaughan Walker.
"This is a just and fair outcome for Mr. Howard, who has been an outstanding father, business man, and member of the Houston community. We would not settle for less than an ultimate dismissal of these charges," said Philip T. Inglima, lead counsel for Howard and co-chair of Crowell & Moring's White Collar & Securities Litigation Group.
In the DPA dismissals, the defendants agreed to accept responsibility for the conduct giving rise to the indictment and to abide by the fraud and anti-manipulation statutes, among other things. The government agreed to move to dismiss immediately without prejudice. Howard and the other defendants have agreed to a two-year tolling of the statute of limitations and their speedy trial rights. If they adhere to the DPA's terms over the next two years, the dismissal will be final and charges can never be refiled. Federal DPA resolutions are rare in the case of individual defendants, as opposed to corporations.
The Howard defense team, led by Inglima, included Crowell & Moring associates Ann M. Mason and Jody Goodman and San Francisco co-counsel Mary McNamara of Swanson McNamara & Haller LLP. The Howard team worked closely with Reliant's lead counsel, William H. Jeffress Jr. Of Baker Botts, as well as counsel for the other individuals, which included Steven M. Salky of Zuckerman Spaeder LLP.
"This win was a great team effort involving all the defense counsel," said Inglima.
Crowell & Moring LLP is a full-service law firm with nearly 350 lawyers practicing in litigation, antitrust, government contracts, corporate, intellectual property and more than 40 other practice areas. More than two-thirds of the firm's lawyers regularly litigate disputes on behalf of domestic and international corporations, start-up businesses, and individuals. Crowell & Moring's extensive client work ranges from advising on one of the world's largest telecommunications mergers to representing governments and corporations on international arbitration matters. Based in Washington, D.C., the firm also has offices in California, New York, London, and Brussels.