Lederer, Lawrence J.
Address: 1818 Market Street Suite 3600, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Lawyer Firm: Berger Montague
|Areas of Practice||Securities & Investor Protection, Commercial Litigation|
Lawrence J. Lederer is a shareholder in the firm’s Securities and Commercial Litigation practice groups. He has extensive experience representing and advising institutional investors in securities litigation. He has led the prosecution of many securities class action cases that have resulted in substantial recoveries for investors.
For example, he was co-lead counsel for the State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio which, in August 2009, obtained $475 million in In re Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. Securities, Derivative and ERISA Litigation, Master File No. 07-cv-9633 (JSR) (DFE) (S.D.N.Y.). This securities class action involved Merrill Lynch’s financial exposures to collateralized debt obligations and other financial instruments linked to subprime mortgages. It represents one of the largest recoveries ever under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act. During a hearing on July 27, 2009, Judge Jed S. Rakoff stated that the lead plaintiff had made “very full and well-crafted” and “excellent submissions”; that there was a “very fine job done by plaintiffs’ counsel in this case”; and that the attorney fees requested were “eminently reasonable” and “appropriately modest.”
Mr. Lederer presently is, or recently was, also involved in many individual “opt-out” securities cases such as Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Ret. Sys. v. Citigroup, Inc., No. 11-2583, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 55829 (E.D. Pa. May 20, 2011); State of New Jersey, Department of Treasury, Division of Investment v. Fuld, 604 F.3d 816 (3d Cir. 2010); Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Ret. Sys. v. Time Warner Inc., Case No. 002103, July Term 2003 (Pa. Common Pleas Ct., Phila. Cty.); In re Waste Management, Inc. Securities Litigation, 194 F. Supp. 2d 590 (S.D. Tex. 2002); and Kelly v. McKesson HBOC, Inc., C.A. No. 99C-09-265 WCC, 2002 Del. Super. LEXIS 39 (Del. Super. Jan. 17, 2002). The investor plaintiffs in each of these cases obtained recoveries significantly larger than what they would have obtained from the related class actions.
Mr. Lederer also advises and represents government entities in commercial and other matters. For example, he was part of a team of outside counsel for one state Attorney General’s office in multi-state civil enforcement proceedings that resulted in landmark mortgage modifications and related relief for hundreds of thousands of borrowers nationwide against Countrywide Financial Corp. (and its parent, Bank of America Corp.) in December 2008 valued at approximately $8.6 billion; has advised public pension funds on a wide array of corporate governance and shareholder rights issues; and has advised state government entities concerning financial practices in the structured finance sector, among other areas.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Lederer played a major role in the historic Drexel/Milken/Boesky complex of cases. See, e.g., In re Michael R. Milken and Associates Securities Litigation, MDL Dkt. No. 924, Master File No. M21-62 (MP), 1993 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14242, 1993 WL 413673 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 7, 1993) (approving approximately $1.3 billion overall settlement with Michael R. Milken and some 500 other persons and entities); In re Drexel Burnham Lambert Group Inc., 995 F.2d 1138 (2d Cir. 1993) (affirming $1.3 billion settlement); Presidential Life Insurance Co. v. Milken, et al., 946 F. Supp. 267 (S.D.N.Y. 1996) (approving $50 million settlement against some 500 defendants); In re Ivan F. Boesky Securities Litigation, 948 F.2d 1358 (2d Cir. 1991) (affirming approval of settlements totaling approximately $29 million; subsequent class, derivative, and other settlements approved totaling in excess of $200 million).
Also experienced on the defense side, Mr. Lederer helped obtain a pre-trial dismissal of a securities class action against DRDGold, a gold mining company based in South Africa. See In re DRDGold Ltd. Securities Litigation, 05-cv-5542 (VM), 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 7180 (S.D.N.Y. Jan. 31, 2007). He also helped defend an individual charged with “insider trading” in a criminal jury trial in federal court, and in parallel civil enforcement proceedings brought by the SEC. United States v. Pileggi, No. 97-cr-612-2, 1998 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8068 (E.D. Pa. June 3, 1998), aff’d, No. 98-1811, 1999 U.S. App. LEXIS 18592 (3d Cir. July 22, 1999).
In bankruptcy litigation, Mr. Lederer helped obtain hundreds of millions of dollars for investors in the complex Chapter 11 proceedings involving Drexel Burnham Lambert, including through appeals before the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the United States Supreme Court. See, e.g., In re The Drexel Burnham Lambert Group, Inc., 130 B.R. 910 (Bankr. & S.D.N.Y. Aug. 20, 1991), aff’d, 960 F.2d 285 (2d Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 506 U.S. 1088 (1993). See also Sapir, et al. v. Delphi Ventures, et al., No. 99-cv-8086-JORDAN (S.D. Fla.) (recovery of $3.8 million following extensive bankruptcy and related proceedings).
Mr. Lederer has achieved the highest peer-review rating, “AV,” in Martindale-Hubbell for legal abilities and ethical standards; has repeatedly been selected as one of Pennsylvania’s “Super Lawyers” in the category of securities litigation, and has served on the editorial advisory board of Securities Law360. Mr. Lederer is admitted to practice law in Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia, and several federal courts. Mr. Lederer graduated from Georgetown University Law Center (LL.M. 1988), Western New England College School of Law (J.D. 1987), where he was a member of Western New England Law Review, and the University of Pittsburgh (B.A. 1984), where he was managing editor of The Pitt News, and co-captain (1983) and captain (1984) of the men’s varsity tennis team.
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