James Gatta is a partner in Goodwin’s Government Investigations and Enforcement and White Collar Defense practices and co-chair of the firm’s Healthcare practice. His practice focuses on representing U.S. and multinational companies and individuals with respect to government and internal corporate investigations, white collar criminal defense, regulatory compliance and related civil litigation, and complex commercial litigation.
Mr. Gatta is ranked by Chambers USA among the leading white collar defense and government investigations attorneys in New York, and as someone who “brings enormous credibility with the US government, and is an expert in helping clients navigate complex investigations.” Mr. Gatta is also recommended by The Legal 500 US in corporate investigations and white collar criminal defense.
Before joining the firm, Mr. Gatta served as the Chief of the Criminal Division at the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York (EDNY). In that role, Mr. Gatta oversaw all of the EDNY’s criminal investigations and prosecutions, including some of the nation’s most significant corporate, securities and healthcare fraud, public corruption, foreign bribery, cybercrime, sanctions and export enforcement, international terrorism and organized and violent crimes cases. Mr. Gatta served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the EDNY for over a decade, where he held a number of leadership positions and handled a range of cases. As Chief of the EDNY’s Public Integrity Section, Mr. Gatta led a team of experienced federal prosecutors in investigations, prosecutions and trials involving corruption and white collar offenses, including those involving elected and appointed government officials, such as bribery and embezzlement as well as financial, honest services, campaign finance and tax fraud. Among other cases, he managed and led investigations that resulted in the convictions of New York State legislators and a sitting U.S. congressman.
Mr. Gatta is an experienced courtroom advocate and has successfully tried several federal criminal trials and argued numerous federal criminal appeals. He also earned a number of awards and commendations for his work as a prosecutor. In 2017, he received an Executive Office of United States Attorneys Director’s Award for Superior Performance as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and was named a “Prosecutor of the Year” by the Federal Law Enforcement Foundation in 2011.
Mr. Gatta previously served as a Lecturer in Law at Columbia University School of Law, where he co-taught a seminar on federal litigation. Before his tenure at the EDNY, Mr. Gatta was an associate at Goodwin and represented individuals and entities in white collar criminal and regulatory matters. Earlier in his career, he was a law clerk to the Honorable Frank Maas in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Prior to law school, Mr. Gatta was a New York City Urban Fellow.
Fordham University School of Law
(summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa)
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Honorable Frank Maas
- New York
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
Recognition & Awards
Mr. Gatta has been selected for inclusion in The Legal 500 2022 as a Recommended Healthcare lawyer. Mr. Gatta is recognized by Chambers USA 2021 and 2022 for his work in Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations. His clients have referred him as “a real pleasure to deal with” and “is incredibly collaborative and has a great deal of credibility with the government”.
- “Cutting Off the Stream: How United States v. Silver Affects ‘Stream of Benefits’ or ‘Retainer’ Bribery,” Business Crimes Bulletin (May 2020)
- “COVID-19: US DOJ Prioritizes Coronavirus-related Fraud Investigations; Announces First Civil Enforcement Action,” Goodwin Client Alert (March 2020)
- “Recent Developments in Charges of Insider Trading,” Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation (January 2020)
- “DOJ Formally Expands Corporate Enforcement Initiatives Designed to Encourage Company Disclosure & Cooperation,” Goodwin Client Alert (March 2019)
- “New DOJ Policies May Help Companies Better Navigate False Claims Act Investigations,” Risk & Compliance Magazine (January 2019)
- “DOJ Announces Public Release of the Cyber-Digital Task Force’s First Report; Impact on and Role of the Private Sector Likely to be a Focus in the Coming Months,” NYU Compliance and Enforcement Blog (August 2018)
- “FCPA Successor Liability,” Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation (August 2018)
Recent Speaking Engagements
- “Conducting Cross-Border Investigations During The Pandemic and in a Post-COVID-19 World,” NYC Bar Inter-American Affairs Committee, Webinar, (May 2020)
- “New York State Commission on Prosecutorial Conduct: Necessary Oversight or Constitutional Overstep?,” Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity, Columbia Law School, New York, New York (February 2019)
- “Key Issues Facing Boards of Directors of Financial Institutions and Corporations: Heightened Expectations & Risk Around Compliance Programs,” at Directors Roundtable Institute, New York, New York (April 2018)
- “Privilege Under Siege Here and Abroad? The State of the Corporate Attorney Client Privilege,” at Federal Bar Council CLE Program, New York, New York (December 2017)
- “Review of Significant White Collar Cases and Recent Developments,” at Practising Law Institute White Collar Crime 2016: Prosecutors and Regulators Speak, New York, New York (October 2017)
- “Taking Criminals Out of Cyberspace and into the Courtroom: An Evolving Battlefield for Lawyers,” at New York Intellectual Property Law Association (NYIPLA) Hot Topics in IP Law, New York, New York (July 2017)
- “The Department of Justice’s Perspectives on Asset Management,” at Hedge Fund Standard Board (HFSB) Annual North American Stakeholder Forum, New York, New York (June 2017)
- “Handling Public Corruption Cases,” at New York City Bar Association Sixth Annual White Collar Crime Institute, New York, New York (May 2017)
- “The Regulators . . . What’s On Their Agenda?,” at Institute for International Research (IIR) GAIM Ops Cayman, Grand Cayman (April 2017)
- “Sports and Corruption,” at ABA Criminal Justice Section Fifth Annual White Collar Crime London Institute, London, England (October 2016)
- “Review of Significant White Collar Cases and Recent Developments,” at Practising Law Institute White Collar Crime 2016: Prosecutors and Regulators Speak, New York, New York (October 2016)