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David Esseks

Partner

New York

David Esseks

Partner

New York

David's practice focuses on criminal, civil, and regulatory securities litigation and anti-corruption investigations. David's representations include banks and foreign and domestic corporations in connection with US regulatory and criminal investigations concerning securities, commodities, and insider trading offenses, and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and the US antitrust, money laundering and economic sanctions laws as well as individual officers and employees in similar investigations. He has represented banks in the global LIBOR and FX investigations, as well as investigations of CDS trading and bank hiring practices in Asia.

Before joining A&O, Mr. Esseks was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and Chief of that Office’s Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force. In that role, he oversaw a staff of 20 prosecutors and coordinated fraud investigations with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and FINRA.

Mr. Esseks has been recognized by Chambers as “'Experienced, thoughtful and results-driven'…He 'is calm under pressure, smart and strategic.'”, "an extremely talented trial lawyer and cross-examiner who is the picture of credibility in the courtroom".

Chambers also describes Mr. Esseks as "a go-to attorney for a range of corporations and financial institutions facing allegations of criminal misconduct and regulatory proceedings, drawing praise as an 'incredibly smart attorney with excellent judgment.'"

A representative set of Mr. Esseks’ recent matters include:

  • Defense of a hedge fund partner at trial in the Southern District of New York on insider trading charges.
  • Defense of BNP Paribas in wide-ranging investigations by US federal and state authorities regarding the FX market.
  • Defense of a corruption inquiry concerning the hiring practices of an investment bank.
  • Defense of a Commodity Futures Trading Commission investigation of an investment bank regarding interest rate swaps.
  • Defense of a National Futures Association investigation of CDS trading by an investment bank.
  • Defense of a sanctions investigation of an international bank
  • Defense of a money laundering investigation of an international bank.
  • Representation of individual executives in investigations regarding potential insider trading, money laundering, sanctions, corruption, and antitrust violations.
  • Defense of investment banks in various civil class actions in the Southern District of New York concerning the trading of financial instruments.
  • Mr. Esseks graduated cum laude from Williams College with a B.A. in 1987 and magna cum laude from University of Michigan Law School with a J.D. in 1990 where he was an Articles Editor of the Law Review. He clerked for the Honorable Amalya Lyle Kearse on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

News & insights

Publications: 03 APRIL 2020

Covid-19 coronavirus measures impacting insolvency proceedings and enforcement

In light of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, the vast majority of European countries are implementing various measures concerning insolvency proceedings, restructurings and rights of creditors generally.  At the same time, accessibility of insolvency courts and practitioners is becoming limited. 

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Publications: 03 APRIL 2020

Covid-19 coronavirus: U.S. regulatory enforcement and civil litigation over ESG disclosures update

Why the Covid-19 coronavirus crisis might accelerate U.S. regulatory enforcement and civil litigation over ESG disclosures

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Publications: 03 APRIL 2020

Covid-19 coronavirus: virtual and e-signings under South African law

With the current Covid-19 lockdowns restricting the mobility of signatories on a global scale, virtual and e-signings are hot topics.

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Publications: 18 JULY 2019

U.S. continues aggressive sanctions and anti-money laundering enforcement against non-U.S. banks

When assessing anti-money laundering risk and exposure, global financial institutions should be mindful of the complex landscape and assertions of broad authority by U.S. authorities and banking regulators. A multinational financial institution with a U.S. branch may find its worldwide activities scrutinized by U.S. banking regulators even if its branch does not service those activities, and what’s more, even without a U.S. branch, a bank may still have civil or criminal U.S. exposure for payments cleared in the United States.

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Office

New York

Allen & Overy LLP
1221 Avenue of the Americas
New York
NY 10020

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Qualifications

Professional

Admitted: Bar of the State of New York 1992

Academic

J.D., magna cum laude, University of Michigan Law School, Order of the Coif, 1990

B.A., cum laude, Williams College, 1987

Published Work