Richard L Matheny III

Richard L. Matheny III

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Richard L. Matheny III
Washington, DC
+1 202 346 4130

Rich Matheny, a partner in Goodwin’s Washington D.C. office, heads the firm’s Global Trade practice. Rich advises clients on a broad range of US regulatory issues concerning international trade and investment, including the exportation of controlled goods and services from the United States; the provision of defense articles and services; transactions involving sanctioned countries, persons, and entities; and cross-border investments and transactions that may impact the national security or foreign policy of the United States.

He is particularly adept at helping technology companies and private equity firms to successfully navigate these critical regulatory regimes, including national security reviews conducted by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS); the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and the Antiboycott Regulations of the Commerce Department; the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) of the State Department; the economic sanctions administered by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the Treasury Department; and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Rich holds the rare distinction of being nationally ranked by Chambers in two separate areas:  International Trade: CFIUS Experts (Chambers USA) and International Trade: Economic Sanctions and Export Controls (Chambers USA, Chambers Global). Chambers describes Rich as “a great resource” to clients who provides “prompt, pertinent, and thoughtful advice.”


Rich has handled numerous national security reviews conducted by the federal interagency CFIUS in connection with investments from Australian, Canadian, Chinese, Dutch, Hong Kong, French, Israeli, Japanese, Norwegian, Russian, Singaporean, Spanish, Turkish, and UK entities, including investments in, among other US businesses: an AI-data / precision medicine platform; a property management system for hotels; a hydrogen fuel-cell manufacturer; an instant messaging service provider; a network security software company; an ultraviolet LED developer; an X-ray fluorescence analyzer manufacturer; an optoelectronics / photonics manufacturer; a composite materials manufacturer; a logistics software company; a machine tools manufacturer; a global containership operator; a REIT joint venture; and a manufacturer of optical inverters for night vision.

Rich has deep experience in the handling of “non-notified” CFIUS reviews, including as counsel to parties in two of the most significant data-related national security reviews that CFIUS has ever conducted, serving as counsel to Shiji Group (China) and StayNTouch, as well as counsel to PatientsLikeMe and iCarbonX Group (China), in connection with CFIUS’s post-closing review of those acquisitions.

A significant part of Rich’s practice has involved internal investigations in support of voluntary disclosures or in defense of agency-initiated investigations and prosecutions of the export controls and sanctions laws. His experience includes:

  • Defense of a California resident and his company in a federal criminal prosecution involving the export of laptop computers to Iran through Dubai, UAE (United States v. Online Micro, D.D.C.)
  • Investigation and disclosure to OFAC of a US-owned foreign subsidiary’s transactions with airlines owned by the Cuban government and listed as Specially Designated Nationals
  • Representation before the SEC Office of Global Security Risk of a major travel website company in an investigation of travel-related services pertaining to Iran, Sudan and Syria; and of a test-preparation company in an investigation of a franchisee located in Syria
  • Investigation of a tactical electronics manufacturer regarding hundreds of unauthorized exports of military equipment in violation of the ITAR
  • Defense of an OFAC investigation regarding retention of Iranian nationals for Farsi translation services
  • Representation of a client investigated for brokering transactions for the development of petroleum resources in Sudan
  • Representation of an analytical instruments company investigated simultaneously by the Commerce Department and the FBI for exports to China and Dubai that raised nuclear proliferation concerns
  • Dozens of investigations and voluntary disclosures to the Commerce Department relating to the unlawful export of software and hardware containing encryption functionality

Rich has helped over a thousand separate clients on compliance and export licensing matters, including with respect to:

  • The export of multi-million dollar equipment to China for use in a Pakistani nuclear power plant
  • US sanctions against a hospital associated with a Colombian drug cartel
  • Underwater autonomous vehicles exported for scientific exploration
  • “Deemed” exports relating to the disclosure of EAR-controlled ultraviolet LED technology to Chinese nationals and the disclosure of ITAR-controlled optoelectronics technology to Israeli nationals
  • An ocean common carrier regarding ITAR ramifications of carrying armed security personnel to defend against piracy in the Gulf of Aden
  • Compliance with SEC reporting requirements pertaining to Iran-related transactions of affiliates of US public companies
  • Scores of companies that manufacture software enabling encryption functionality

Rich’s FCPA work includes the development and installation of FCPA compliance programs for companies in diverse industries, from private equity firms and equipment manufacturers to software developers and satellite communications companies. He has investigated potential corrupt practices in Brazil, China, India, and Saudi Arabia, among other places, and has advised investors on corporate acquisitions where the risk for corrupt practices is apparent.

Professional Experience

Rich was an attorney at Shea & Gardner prior to its combination with Goodwin in 2004.




University of Pennsylvania Law School


University of California


Duke University


U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Honorable Robert E. Payne



  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland


  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

Recognition & Awards

Rich is listed in both Chambers Global and Chambers USA in the areas of International Trade: Export Controls and Economic Sanctions, and International Trade: CFIUS Experts.

Rich is recognized by Legal 500 US for his work in CFIUS as well as Customs, Export Controls, and Economic Sanctions.

In law school, Rich was an associate editor of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. He is the author of “In the Wake of the Flood: ‘Like Products’ and Cultural Products After the World Trade Organization’s Decision in Canada: Certain Measures Concerning Periodicals,” 147 U. Pennsylvania L. Rev. 245 (1998).


Rich’s publications include:

  • Co-Author, "U.S. Sanctions Compliance During COVID-19 Pandemic-Related Guidance From the Office of Foreign Asset Control," Goodwin Client Alert, April 21, 2020
  • Co-Author, “The Bitter and The Sweet: Expanded CFIUS Authorities over Foreign Investment in U.S. Businesses,” Goodwin Client Alert, January 17, 2020
  • Co-Author, “CFIUS Rules Would Expand Jurisdiction Over Investments Related to Technology, Infrastructure, Personal Data, and Real Estate,” Goodwin Client Alert, September 20, 2019
  • Co-Author, “Cuba Sanctions Broadened To Target Investors and Travelers,” Goodwin Client Alert, April 29, 2019
  • Co-Author, “Huawei Temporary General License Modified, Extended 90 Days, and 46 Additional Huawei Entities Designated,” Goodwin Client Alert, August 20, 2019
  • Co-Author, “Temporary General License Authorizes Limited Transactions with Huawei Otherwise Prohibited by Entity List Designation,” Goodwin Client Alert, May 22, 2019
  • Co-Author, “U.S. Targets Chinese Telecom Giant Huawei, Possibly Others, for Trade Restrictions,” Goodwin Client Alert, May 20, 2019
  • Co-Author, “US Government to Define “Emerging Technologies,” Impacting CFIUS and Export Controls,” Goodwin Client Alert, November 19, 2018
  • Co-Author, “Treasury Department Imposes Mandatory Filing Requirement on Parties to Certain Foreign Investments in US Critical Technologies,” Goodwin Client Alert, October 12, 2018
  • Co-Author, “Five Ways CFIUS Reform Law Will Impact Foreign Investment in the United States,” Goodwin Client Alert, August 12, 2018
  • Co-Author, “President Trump Pulls the U.S. From the Iran Nuclear Deal,” Goodwin Client Alert, May 15, 2018
  • “U.S. Imposes Blanket Denial of Exports to Chinese Telecom Giant ZTE,” Goodwin Client Alert, April 17, 2018
  • Co-Author, “President Trump Blocks Broadcom’s Bid to Take Over Qualcomm Upon Recommendations from CFIUS,” Goodwin Client Alert, March 15, 2018
  • Co-Author, “Sudan Sanctions Lifted,” Goodwin Client Alert, October 16, 2017
  • Co-Author, “New U.S. Sanctions On Government of Venezuela Affect Debt, Equity, and other Transactions by US Persons or within the United States,” Goodwin Client Alert, August 29, 2017

Rich is frequently quoted in the media on export controls and sanctions matters, including in The Wall Street Journal, US News & World Report, Politico, Radio Free Europeand Law360. Recently, he was interviewed by Biocentury — “CFIUS Waiting Game” and Foreign Investment Watch — “What To Expect When You’re Expecting (To Hear From CFIUS).” Rich also served as a panelist on “Sanctions: How to Stay within the Law Amid a More Stringent World Regime” at the Dow Jones Global Compliance Symposium and presented at a conference titled “Foreign Third-Party Violations of US Laws in International Transactions.”