WINSTON-SALEM/RALEIGH (June 2) – Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton announced today that Clay C. Wheeler, a former Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) for the Eastern District of North Carolina (2002-2011), and Chief of the Economic Crimes Section there (2009-2011), has joined the firm as a partner in its litigation department, resident in the firm’s Winston-Salem and Raleigh offices.

As a federal prosecutor, Mr. Wheeler led teams consisting of AUSAs and federal agents in the investigation, prosecution, and, when necessary, trial of complex financial crimes. His experience includes approximately 100 criminal investigations and prosecutions and thirteen successful jury verdicts as sole or lead counsel. As a supervisor, Mr. Wheeler was responsible for the work of the eight economic crimes prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s Office, covering a broad range of subject matter, from environmental crimes to mortgage fraud to money laundering. Mr. Wheeler’s experience includes extensive work in the following areas:

  • Securities Fraud. Working alongside the Securities and Exchange Commission and state regulators, Mr. Wheeler handled numerous prosecutions and trials involving sophisticated securities fraud, including accounting fraud, the sale of unregistered securities, and several multi-million-dollar Ponzi schemes. Mr. Wheeler also has extensive experience with criminal tax matters.
  • Computer Data Security. Mr. Wheeler’s experience with computer data breaches includes two extensive investigations and subsequent trials, one involving a victimized defense contractor in the Washington, D.C. area, and the other the large-scale theft of patient information from the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs.
  • Health Care Fraud. Mr. Wheeler’s investigations and supervision in this area involved providers of health care who had committed significant frauds in order to get government payments to which they were not entitled. Mr. Wheeler’s successes in this area include his supervision of a prosecution which, earlier this year, resulted in what is believed to be the largest health care fraud sentence ever imposed in North Carolina in a guilty plea case -- 12 years imprisonment. Mr. Wheeler served as the Health Care Fraud Coordinator for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

A significant amount of Mr. Wheeler’s professional experience is tied to California. He served for almost five years as a Special Assistant United States Attorney in the Central District of California, where he was the government’s lead lawyer in a contraband cigarette case tried in Los Angeles. He clerked for United States District Judge Susan Y. Illston in San Francisco, and practiced with the Cooley Godward firm in Palo Alto, California for four years before joining the Department of Justice.

Mr. Wheeler is a graduate of Duke University School of Law, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Duke Law Journal.

“We feel extremely fortunate to have Clay join our firm. His substantial trial experience in complex cases on both coasts of our country will help us continue to represent our clients across the nation at a very high level” said senior Kilpatrick lawyer Dan Taylor.

"I am looking forward to working with Kilpatrick Townsend's outstanding attorneys and clients," said Mr. Wheeler. "Kilpatrick Townsend, with its incredible depth of expertise and geographical reach, is the perfect platform for my practice and, most importantly, for providing clients with excellent service.”

About Kilpatrick Townsend

Kilpatrick Townsend has nearly 650 attorneys in 18 offices extending into the four corners of the continental United States; Asia; and Europe, including: Atlanta, GA; Augusta, GA; Charlotte, NC; Denver, CO; New York, NY; Oakland, CA; Palo Alto, CA; Raleigh, NC; San Diego, CA; San Francisco, CA; Seattle, WA; Walnut Creek, CA; Washington, DC; Winston-Salem, NC; Dubai; Stockholm; Taipei, and Tokyo. For more information, please visit: www.kilpatricktownsend.com.

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