- J.D., cum laude, Northwestern University School of Law, 1982; Articles Editor, Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology
- B.S., M.A., with honors, Northwestern University, 1978
- New York
- Southern and Eastern Districts of New York
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- The Honorable John J. Gibbons, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, 1982-1983
Linda Imes, a founding partner of Spears & Imes LLP, has been a criminal and civil litigator for three decades, with substantial trial and appellate experience. She focuses on white collar criminal defense, securities enforcement, and complex civil litigation.
Early in her career, Ms. Imes was a federal prosecutor in the Southern District of New York. There, she served in the Major Crimes Unit and Securities and Commodity Fraud Unit prosecuting a wide variety of complex business and commercial crimes including tax evasion, money laundering, transportation of stolen property, bank fraud, mail and wire fraud, and securities fraud. During her years as a prosecutor, Ms. Imes had a dozen trials and argued as many appeals in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Ms. Imes has been in private practice since 1989 and has tried cases in federal court, before regulators, and to mediators. Ms. Imes has represented individuals and corporations in investigations by, and matters involving, the U.S. Attorney's Office, the Securities and Exchange Commission, FINRA (formerly the New York Stock Exchange and NASD), the New York State Attorney General's Office, the District Attorney's Office, the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, the U.S. Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, the Federal Reserve, and other governmental and regulatory bodies. Ms. Imes' work frequently involves defending clients faced with more than one investigation at a time, often combined with civil litigation. Since 2009, Ms. Imes has been named by Chambers & Partners as a Leader in the Field of White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations.
Ms. Imes has been involved in appellate advocacy since the beginning of her legal career, when she clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. While at the U.S. Attorney's Office, Ms. Imes served as Deputy Chief of Appeals. In private practice, Ms. Imes has briefed and argued numerous cases in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, New York's Appellate Division, and the New York Court of Appeals. In late 2011, she argued a Second Circuit appeal concerning the application of the Supreme Court's decision in Morrison v. National Australia Bank Ltd., 130 S. Ct. 2869 (2010), which held that Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 does not apply extraterritorially. In March 2012, the Second Circuit reversed the district court's dismissal with prejudice of her clients' complaint. See Absolute Activist Value Master Fund Ltd. v. Ficeto, 677 F.3d 60 (2d Cir. 2012).
Some notable representations in criminal matters include:
- representation of senior executive of international bank in money laundering and Bank Secrecy Act investigations by the Department of Justice, the U.S. Attorney's Office, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and in testimony before the U.S. Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations;
- representation (with partner Christopher Dysard) of corporate tech sector executive in insider trading investigations by the U.S. Attorney's Office and the SEC;
- representation of corporate executives in federal task force investigation of the April 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico led by the Department of Justice Criminal Division and including the SEC;
- representation of corporate officials in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigation by the Department of Justice;
- representation of Citibank officer in high-profile money laundering investigation by the U.S. Attorney's Office, and in testimony before the U.S. Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations;
- internal investigation concerning corporate client's compliance with Trading with the Enemy Act and Office of Foreign Assets Control regulations;
- representation (with partner David Spears) of New York art dealer in criminal trial concerning receipt of Egyptian antiquities;
- representation of numerous employees of a public company in the grocery wholesale business in criminal and SEC investigations concerning the company's accounting practices;
- representation of New York City officials in joint investigation by the U.S. Attorney's Office and New York City's Department of Investigations concerning certain budget practices; and
- representation of senior executive of a public company in a criminal investigation concerning government contracts.
Some notable representations in securities-related investigations or proceedings include:
- representation of former global head of Collateralized Debt Obligations ("CDOs") for large financial institution in an investigation by, and testimony before, the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, as well as in related civil litigation;
- representation of former Merrill Lynch executive in connection with subprime securitization investigations by FINRA, the New York Attorney General's Office, and the SEC, as well as in related civil litigation;
- representation (with partner Christopher Dysard) of a senior trader at a major broker-dealer in connection with investigations by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Connecticut and the SEC;
- representation of employee of a large money market fund in investigations by the SEC and state securities regulator, as well as in related civil litigation;
- representation of three former Merrill Lynch employees in SEC investigation concerning pension consulting industry and in related FINRA investigation; and
- representation (with partner Charlita Mays) of broker-dealer's former compliance employee in connection with FINRA investigation, hearing before FINRA's Office of Hearing Officers, and appeal to FINRA's National Adjudicatory Council.
Some notable representations in complex civil litigations include:
- representation (with partner David Spears) of institutional plaintiffs in federal securities fraud suit seeking recovery for fraud in connection with sale of bonds in which clients ultimately recovered nearly 100 percent of their losses;
- representation (with partner Christopher Dysard) of a group of hedge funds as plaintiffs in a civil action in the Southern District of New York against several individuals and entities, alleging a fraudulent scheme in violation of federal securities laws and state law; the district court denied six defendants' motions to dismiss, see Absolute Activist Master Value Fund, Ltd. v. Ficeto, No. 09 Civ. 8862 (GBD), 2013 WL 1286170 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 28, 2013);
- representation of defendant in trial of federal securities fraud suit;
- representation of Fortune 50 corporation in mediation of claim arising from derivatives transactions with Bankers Trust;
- representation (with partner David Spears) of Columbia University in a qui tam proceeding based on allegations of improper Medicaid billing for obstetrical services at a University hospital; and
- representation of corporate plaintiff in complex arbitration alleging fraud and breach of environmental representations and warranties in merger agreement.
Recent speaking engagements have included:
- National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Eighth Annual Defending the White Collar Case: In & Out of Court (November 2012);
- Practising Law Institute, Expert Witness 2012, Role of Expert Witnesses in Complex Litigation (June 2012);
- American Bar Association Section of Litigation, Nothing Mock About It: Using Jury Consultants in the Real World (April 2010);
- New York State Bar Association, Financial Penalties and Victims' Rights in White Collar Cases (November 2009); and
- National Institute on Internal Corporate Investigations and In-House Counsel, To Preserve and Protect: D&O Insurance, Indemnification and Advancement (May 2009).
Ms. Imes is a member of the Federal Bar Council, the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, and the City Bar's White Collar Criminal Law Committee. She is also a member of the Board of the New York Council of Defense Lawyers.