Mr. Raissi is a partner of the Firm and Chair of the Firm’s Securities Enforcement Defense Group. Before joining the Firm, Mr. Raissi was a Senior Counsel in the Division of Enforcement of the Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C. While at the SEC, he handled investigations and litigation in both federal court and administrative forums, including cases involving accounting irregularities, auditor misconduct, internal corporate controls, public company disclosures and periodic reports, insider trading, securities offerings, market manipulation, and broker-dealer and investment adviser regulation. Mr. Raissi had broad experience with the full range of government regulation of the capital markets while at the SEC, having worked closely with federal and state criminal prosecutors, the CFTC, foreign regulatory agencies, and self-regulatory organizations such as FINRA.

In private practice, Mr. Raissi has represented companies, boards, officers, directors and other individuals before federal and state securities regulators, criminal prosecutors, self-regulatory organizations, and in private litigation. He has extensive experience with hundreds of government investigations and litigated cases involving public company accounting and reporting issues, insider trading, as well as those involving investment advisers, hedge funds, venture capital and private equity firms, broker-dealers, investment companies, custodians, administrators, and auditors. While Mr. Raissi personally enjoys trying cases, his clients usually prefer not to and he therefore specializes in guiding clients through government investigations with the goal of avoiding litigation and publicity. Nevertheless, sometimes litigation is unavoidable and Mr. Raissi has consistently obtained favorable outcomes for his clients in disputed matters.

Mr. Raissi is also a recognized expert on insider trading issues, and brings a deep knowledge of the capital markets to bear in representing clients involved in insider trading matters and in counseling institutional investors. As institutional investing in private companies has grown over the past decade, Mr. Raissi has increasingly been involved in disputes between private companies and their investors. Mr. Raissi has represented both private companies and investors in disputes resolved informally or through litigation.

Mr. Raissi’s principal areas of practice are SEC enforcement matters, DOJ matters involving the securities laws,  securities and corporate litigation, internal investigations, and regulatory compliance.

Mr. Raissi frequently litigates cases involving complex securities matters. On several occasions he has successfully litigated against the SEC and self-regulatory organizations. Some of his noteworthy decisions include:

  • Boyd v. Kingdom Trust Co.,  154 Ohio St.3d 196, 2018-Ohio-3156 (Ohio Supreme Court August 9, 2018) (successfully argued issue of state securities law before the Ohio Supreme Court).
  • SEC v. Felix, et al., No. C-12-1258 (N.D. Cal. December 3, 2013) (defeated SEC’s motion for summary judgment).
  • SEC v. Leslie, et al., 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 76826 (N.D. Cal. 2010) (partial summary judgment granted for client in SEC public company financial reporting case).
  • In re KFx, Inc., 299 F.Supp.2d 262 (S.D.N.Y. 2004) (full summary judgment granted for clients in section 16 “short swing” case).
  • SEC v. Truong, 98 F.Supp.2d 1086 (N.D. Cal. 2000) (full summary judgment granted for client in SEC insider trading case).
  • SEC v. Dain Rauscher, Inc., et al., Fed. Sec. L. Rep. (CCH) ¶90,665; 1999 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16905 (C.D. Cal. Aug. 18, 1999) (full summary judgment granted for client in SEC municipal bond offering case).

Representative Matters

Mr. Raissi has represented hundreds of clients in a broad spectrum of matters, which have included:

  • Representing investment advisers, hedge funds, VC funds, private equity funds, and their principals and employees in hundreds of SEC, DOJ, CFTC, and state investigations and enforcement actions involving insider trading, disclosures, conflicts of interest, fees and expenses, trade allocations, trade errors, preferential and distressed redemptions, advertising, asset valuation, performance reporting, fiduciary duty, custody, manipulation, Regulation SHO, Regulation M, research practices, accounting restatements, “robo-adviser” issues, solicitors, testimonials, non-registration, Sections 13 and 16, proxy solicitation, and theft.
  • Representing public company directors, officers, and employees, as well as attorneys, hedge funds, investment advisers, portfolio managers, investment analysts, regular investors, and others in scores of SEC, DOJ, and FINRA insider trading investigations and litigation.
  • Ongoing representation of scores of institutional investors in providing real-time insider trading advice for pending trades.
  • Representing dozens of public company boards and board committees in audit and special litigation committee investigations involving accounting matters, disclosure issues, related party transactions, anti-trust matters, insider trading, 10b5-1 plans, regulatory violations, and employee conduct matters.
  • Representing directors, CEOs, CFO’s, sales executives, in-house attorneys, and other employees in dozens of SEC and DOJ public company accounting and disclosure fraud investigations and cases.
  • Representing dozens of directors, CEOs, CFOs and other employees in public company internal investigations.
  • Representing public company executives in SEC matters involving Sarbanes Oxley’s “clawback” provision.
  • Representing numerous issuers, directors, officers, and others in securities class action litigation in federal and state courts nationwide.
  • Representing audit firms, engagement partners, concurring (EQR) partners, and audit staff in SEC, PCAOB, and state board investigations and enforcement actions.
  • Representing IRA custodians and fund administrators in government investigations and private litigation.
  • Representing numerous short sellers in SEC investigations into research practices, manipulation, and insider trading, as well as in private litigation brought against short sellers by public companies.
  • Representing several investment publications and authors in SEC and state investigations and enforcement actions, as well as in private litigation, involving manipulation, investment-adviser registration, defamation, and compensation disclosure issues.
  • Representing several individuals and companies in SEC investigations and litigation involving the secondary market for “pre-IPO” private stock.
  • Representing institutional and individual investors in disputes and litigation with private portfolio companies over investment representations, corporate governance, control, and related matters.
  • Representing individuals and entities in private litigation in federal and state courts, and in arbitration proceedings, ranging from the successful defense of a complex four-week arbitration brought against clients by over 90 claimants to matters in the federal Courts of Appeals.
  • Representing market-makers, liquidity providers, floor brokers, upstairs brokers, registered representatives, and broker-dealers in SEC, CFTC, FINRA, and exchange matters.
  • Representing registered representatives in connection with terminations, departures, and Form U disclosures.
  • Representing ICO issuers and crypto-currency related businesses in SEC investigations and private disputes.
  • Representing clients in matters involving numerous state regulators and law-enforcement agencies, including those in California, Nevada, Massachusetts, and New York.

Mr. Raissi frequently speaks on issues of securities law and policy at regional and national forums.

Upcoming Speaking Events:

International Bar Association
International Conference on Private Investment Funds
London, England

While at the SEC, Mr. Raissi was recognized for his outstanding contribution to the Division of Enforcement. He is a member of the Association of Securities and Exchange Commission Alumni, the Bar Association of San Francisco, and the Association of Business Trial Lawyers. Mr. Raissi also serves on a number of committees for legal and industry groups.

Mr. Raissi frequently speaks and writes about securities enforcement and regulation. He has been a guest commentator on CNBC and Bloomberg TV, and has been quoted in publications ranging from The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times to the local legal and business press.