Mr. Fondo’s current matters include:
- Representing domestic and international companies, DAOs, and executives in response to SEC, DOJ, CFTC, IRS, OFAC and state investigations relating to digital assets.
- Representing a former analyst of a major U.S. bank charged with insider trading by the U.S. Department of Justice and SEC in the Central District of California; Mr. Fondo successfully defended Ashish Aggarwal at the criminal trial, obtaining an acquittal on all 30 counts. The SEC matter is ongoing.
- Representing a UK company in response to a criminal DOJ antitrust investigation.
- Representing current and former members of the board of directors of a bank in relation to an OCC and DOJ investigation.
- Representing a lawyer criminally charged in the largest tax evasion case in U.S. history.
- Representing the former CEO of Wells Fargo in civil class action and derivative litigation and SEC and OCC investigations, and RICO civil litigation.
- Representing an engineer relating to the alleged theft of trade secrets in a criminal investigation and civil litigation.
- Representing a CEO in response to SEC allegations of insider trading in advance of a merger.
Mr. Fondo’s recent matters include:
- Represented the CEO of a healthcare company in response to criminal charges alleging his receipt of more than $8 million in kickbacks; sentenced to probation only, with no incarceration.
- Represented the issuer of a top digital token in response to the SEC’s investigation of the issuer’s alleged illegal Initial Coin Offering, successfully obtaining a no action letter after a more than two year investigation.
- Representing a former CEO against criminal charges of securities fraud and wire fraud in the SDNY relating to the sale of digital assets.
- Represented the Tezos Foundation in a securities class action pending in the Northern District of California.
- Represented Tierion in its settlement with the SEC regarding the company’s token issuance.
- Represented Poloniex in its settlement with the SEC regarding its trading of digital assets.
- Represented an individual involved with illegal trading in a CFTC investigation, with no action taken.
- Represented a former board member of a public company in an SEC investigation in regards to alleged insider trading while in possession of confidential information about a pending acquisition, successfully obtaining a no action letter.
- Represented two former executives in an SEC and DOJ investigation relating to alleged securities fraud, with no action taken.
- Represented the issuer of a digital token in response to the SEC’s investigation of the issuer’s alleged illegal Initial Coin Offering, with no action taken.
- Represented a client in a post-merger arbitration, resulting in a favorable verdict and multi-million attorney fees award.
- Represented Coinbase in IRS v. Coinbase in the Northern District of California.
- Successful defense at the trial of former J.P. Morgan Securities LLC analyst Ashish Aggarwal on conspiracy, insider trading, and wire fraud charges. A Central District of California jury found Aggarwal not guilty on 26 counts related to his role in an alleged insider trading scheme. The court later granted defendant’s motion to dismiss the remaining four counts. This is a rare defense victory in an insider trading case and the first since the December 2016 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Salman v. United States lowered the bar for prosecutors in insider trading cases.
- Represented the former CEO of a company in a criminal investigation relating to cyber hacking in the Northern District of California, with no action taken.
- Successfully obtained the dismissal of two federal RICO lawsuits filed against a former CEO of a major U.S. bank, affirmed on appeal by the Ninth Circuit.
- Represented a former executive of a public company in a Bank Secrecy Act investigation.
- Led an internal investigation for a public company relating to insider trading.
- Represented a digital currency exchange in obtaining the first civil order in which a federal court custodied digital currency.
- Represented a criminal defendant in the Northern District of California facing a minimum of 10 years in jail; after filing a motion to suppress evidence, the U.S. Attorney’s Office dismissed the indictment against the client shortly before trial.
- Successfully obtained a dismissal of all charges filed against a defendant criminally charged with multiple counts of state securities fraud in an alleged multi-million dollar securities fraud.
- Represented the special committee of a national organic food company in responding to a DOJ criminal investigation in the Eastern District of California, and negotiated a Non-Prosecution Agreement.
- Represented a digital currency company in a DOJ settlement and the first ever FinCEN settlement with a virtual currency exchange.
- Represented Sand Hill Exchange and its founders in the settlement of an SEC enforcement matter relating to derivatives and digital currency.
- Represented an online equity company and its executives in response to an SEC investigation into the unregistered sale of securities and alleged illegal swaps. Resolved for client with no action taken.
- Represented a well-known private equity fund in response to an SEC investigation concerning the fund’s alleged lack of disclosures to investors. Resolved for client with no SEC action taken.
- Represented individuals in a False Claims Act healthcare investigation.
- Represented one of the world's largest online communities in successfully moving to quash the DOJ subpoena seeking user information.
- Represented Internet Archive and the American Library Association in the landmark smartphone privacy and 4th Amendment case of Riley v. California, whose position, outlined in a successful amicus brief, was in substance adopted by the Justices.
Mr. Fondo has been an active participant in bar association activities throughout his career, serving as:
- Steering Committee, Federal Bar Association, Northern District of California, 2016-2018
- Co-Chair, White Collar & Corporate Governance Subcommittee of the Securities Litigation Committee, ABA Section of Litigation, 2008-2022
- Member, Federal Courts Committee, Santa Clara County Bar Association, 2011-2015
He has been a member of the Northern District of California Criminal Justice Act panel since 2014, representing indigent federal criminal defendants.
He is a member of The Government of Bermuda's Global Fintech Advisory Board.
He is a member of the Crypto Valley Association in Switzerland.
His volunteer work includes serving on the Board of Directors of the Los Alto-Mountain View PONY Youth Baseball League and serving as the head coach of Summit Denali High School’s varsity baseball team.
Prior to joining Goodwin, Mr. Fondo served for nearly five years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of California, where he focused on prosecuting white collar crime, including investment, bank, financial, health care and securities fraud, drug trafficking and money laundering. Mr. Fondo’s trials included obtaining the conviction of the owner of a large national company for bank fraud after a month-long trial, the conviction of a criminal defense lawyer for money laundering after a three-week trial, and a conviction for bankruptcy fraud after a two-week trial.
During his time as a federal prosecutor, he led a multi-jurisdictional take down of an international drug trafficking organization resulting in what was believed to be the largest seizure of methamphetamine in U.S. history. This case received the 2012 Northern California High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area case of the year award, an effort run by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Mr. Fondo is on the Northern District of California Criminal Justice Act panel and one of the co-founders of the joint criminal trial program between private law firms in Silicon Valley and Santa Clara County Office of the Public Defender.