Wilkinson Walsh Celebrates Another Outstanding Year of High Stakes Trials and Accolades for the Next Generation of Trial Lawyers

WASHINGTON –Wilkinson Walsh enters its fifth year having cemented its status as the premier trial litigation boutique in the country. 2019 featured three high-stakes, high-pressure trials, in which different partners served as lead trial counsel and eight partners in total had stand-up roles. The firm continued to receive accolades for its successes in delivering results to its clients while deepening its diverse bench of go-to litigators.

Wilkinson Walsh Associates Win Client’s Release in Pro Bono Resentencing Case

Washington, D.C. — Wilkinson Walsh associates Betsy Henthorne and Hayter Whitman, with assistance from partner Rakesh Kilaru, helped secure the early release of their pro bono client, Momolu Stewart, who had been sentenced to life in prison at the age of 16. Following Wilkinson Walsh’s successful efforts, Stewart, who is now 39 years old, was released from prison this week.  Under a recent Washington, D.C., law, the Incarceration Reduction Amendment Act (known as “IRAA”), Stewart was eligible to ask the court to reduce his sentence because he was under 18 at the time of the crime and had served more than 15 years in prison. Wilkinson Walsh successfully argued that Stewart should be resentenced based on, among other factors, the circumstances of his childhood, his accomplishments during his time in prison, and his demonstrated rehabilitation and fitness to society.  “The Wilkinson Walsh team is honored to stand beside Mr. Stewart …

Wilkinson Walsh Partners Rakesh Kilaru, Kosta Stojilkovic Again Named to Benchmark Litigation’s “40 & Under Hot List”

WASHINGTON – For the second consecutive year, Wilkinson Walsh partners Rakesh Kilaru and Kosta Stojilkovic have been selected as leading litigation attorneys in Benchmark Litigation’s 2019 “40 & Under Hot List.” The annual ranking recognizes the “best and brightest law firm partners who stand out in their practices throughout the US” and who are “among the top young talent in their respective litigation communities.” “Rakesh and Kosta continue to demonstrate what it means to be stellar attorneys and exemplary role models,” said Wilkinson Walsh Founding Partner Beth Wilkinson. “Their back-to-back recognitions from Benchmark validate the unparalleled performance that we see on a daily basis in the office and in the courtroom. On behalf of the entire firm, we are so proud of their accomplishments and look forward to their continued success.” Kosta and Rakesh joined Wilkinson Walsh from the federal government. Kosta was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern …

Wilkinson Walsh Celebrates Banner Year of High Stakes Trial Wins By Next Generation Of Trial Lawyers

WASHINGTON – Wilkinson Walsh is racing into its fourth year after notching a series of high-profile victories, led by a large and diverse group of partners. In 2018, all of Wilkinson Walsh’s partners participated in trials and case-dispositive hearings, and several other attorneys achieved significant on-their-feet experience, including through pro bono cases. The firm earned repeated recognition for the depth and successes of its bench and added a new crop of talented litigators to its roster. Wilkinson Walsh won three trials in 2018, each of which was first-chaired by a different partner: On April 27, 2018, Wilkinson Walsh, led by Brian Stekloff, Jeremy Barber, and Lori McGill, won a unanimous defense verdict for Bayer and Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals in Russell v. Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., the second state-court Xarelto bellwether trial in the Pennsylvania Court of Common Pleas. On May 21, 2018, Wilkinson Walsh, led by Kosta Stojilkovic …

Appeals Court Upholds Major Antitrust Win for Wilkinson Walsh Client Georgia Pacific

WASHINGTON,D.C. — The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit unanimously upheld a major trial court win for Wilkinson Walsh client Georgia Pacific, affirming the dismissal of a high stakes antitrust class action lawsuit involving over $10 billion in claimed damages. Georgia Pacific hired Wilkinson Walsh to handle all aspects of summary judgment briefing and trial after the trial court certified Plaintiffs’ proposed class. The Wilkinson Walsh team, led by Beth Wilkinson, Alexandra Walsh, Brant Bishop, and Rakesh Kilaru, developed an evidentiary record focused on the absence of any evidence against Georgia Pacific, and filed independent briefs challenging Plaintiffs’ expert witnesses and seeking summary judgment. In June 2017, the court issued a Daubert opinion that imposed key limits on the testimony Plaintiffs’ witnesses could offer at trial, adopting several of Wilkinson Walsh’s arguments. On August 3, 2017, Wilkinson Walsh won summary judgment for Georgia Pacific. The court’s decision came …

Wilkinson Walsh Secures Another Trial Victory for Bayer in Xarelto Trial

Alexandra Walsh, co-founding partner of Wilkinson, Walsh + Eskovitz, Tamarra Matthews Johnson, and Rakesh Kilaru led the defense team to another victory. WASHINGTON – The Wilkinson Walsh trial team, led by Founding Partner Alexandra Walsh and partners Tamarra Matthews Johnson and Rakesh Kilaru, won the third state-court bellwether trial over the blood- thinner Xarelto in the Pennsylvania Court of Common Pleas. This is the third win for Bayer in state court, and the sixth win overall, in the Xarelto litigation. The Plaintiff, Kevin Cooney, alleged that Bayer and Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals were liable for claims that the Xarelto label did not adequately warn or instruct doctors on the risks of bleeding associated with the anticoagulant medicine Xarelto. Walsh and Johnson served as lead trial counsel for Bayer, and Kilaru helped direct the legal strategy. A 12-member jury in Philadelphia returned a defense verdict after less than three …

Wilkinson Walsh Partners Rakesh Kilaru, Kosta Stojilkovic Named to Benchmark Litigation’s “40 & Under Hot List”

WASHINGTON –Rakesh Kilaru and Kosta Stojilkovic have been recognized as leading litigation attorneys in Benchmark Litigation’s 2018 “40 & Under Hot List,” an annual ranking that “commemorates the most notable up-and-coming litigation attorneys in the United States” who “have established themselves in their respective fields and are set to enjoy bright futures.” “Kosta and Rakesh are true litigation superstars,” said Wilkinson Walsh founding partner Sean Eskovitz. “They bring extraordinary intellects, judgment, and energy to all of their matters. Wilkinson Walsh is committed to developing the next generation of great trial lawyers, and they are leading the way.” Kosta and Rakesh joined Wilkinson Walsh from the federal government. Kosta was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, where he tried financial crime and public corruption cases. Rakesh served as a Special Assistant to the President and Associate Counsel in the Office of White House Counsel. Since joining Wilkinson …

Wilkinson Walsh Secures Victory for NCAA in Defamation Suit by former USC Football Coach

WASHINGTON – Wilkinson Walsh, led by Partners Kosta Stojilkovic and Rakesh Kilaru, and Counsel Kori Bell, won a complete victory for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in a lawsuit brought by former University of Southern California (USC) assistant football coach Todd McNair.  The jury concluded that the NCAA had not defamed McNair in a Committee on Infractions report issued in 2010. McNair filed this lawsuit seven years ago, shortly after the Committee on Infractions report was upheld by a separate appeals committee.  Apart from many other findings against USC, the Committee found that McNair knew about the improper benefits that star running back Reggie Bush had received while at USC, and failed to provide truthful information about them.  In his lawsuit, McNair alleged that the statements about him in the report were false and defamatory, and he sought over $27 million in damages for that claim.  He also brought …

CFPB Dismisses Enforcement Action Against Wilkinson Walsh Tribal Client

WASHINGTON – On January 18, 2018, the CFPB announced the dismissal of a lawsuit brought against the economic development arms of the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake, a sovereign Indian Nation based in California.  The Tribe had retained Wilkinson Walsh in February 2017, shortly after the Tribe was first contacted by the CFPB, to serve as lead counsel in the event the Bureau decided to bring an enforcement action against its economic development arms, which provide loans over the internet to customers throughout the country who freely consent to tribal jurisdiction as a condition of obtaining their loans. In April 2017, the CFPB sued the tribal arms in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, claiming that the loans they originate violate federal law and regulations because they allegedly violate the laws of several different states. Wilkinson Walsh’s team moved to transfer the case to the U.S. …

Talented Litigator Rakesh Kilaru Elected To Wilkinson Walsh Partnership

WASHINGTON – Wilkinson Walsh today announced that Rakesh Kilaru has been elected to the partnership effective January 1, 2018. Since joining Wilkinson Walsh, Rakesh has brought his considerable legal skills and strategic judgment to bear for many of Wilkinson Walsh’s clients, including Georgia Pacific LLP, the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake, and the NCAA.  Among many other matters, Rakesh played a key role in helping Georgia Pacific win summary judgment in August 2017 in an antitrust class action claiming over $10 billion in damages. Rakesh’s hiring and promotion continues Wilkinson Walsh’s impressive expansion; in under two years, the firm has grown to nearly 40 lawyers and has quickly established itself as the leading boutique trial firm in the country. Rakesh is the firm’s 10th partner. “I couldn’t be more excited to join the supremely talented partnership at Wilkinson Walsh,” said Mr. Kilaru. “It’s been thrilling to work alongside the best …