Bradford Edwards & Varlack partner, while at Pierce Bainbridge: Allegations about the firm “if true, would amount to criminal activity.”
Rudy Giuliani hired Pierce Bainbridge. Months earlier, then-partner, Denver G. Edwards lied under oath in an effort to conceal alarming allegations about the firm from public view.
Rudy Giuliani hired Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht LLP late last year. Months earlier, former Pierce Bainbridge partner, Denver G. Edwards, now with Bradford Edwards & Varlack LLP, said certain allegations of “unethical dishonest business practices” at the firm, “if true, would amount to criminal activity.” Edwards even lied under oath to try to keep those allegations from seeing the light of day.
The allegations, among other things, said the firm was “robbing Peter to pay Paul,” and a “house of cards” that “would collapse.” A 90-second video of what went on at Pierce Bainbridge is enlightening. A criminal lawyer recently asked if firm founder John Pierce is involved in a Ponzi Scheme.
The firm’s clientele adds a layer of intrigue.
Three convicted felons joined Giuliani as firm clients, including Michael Avenatti. Weeks after Giuliani hired the firm, the Wall Street Journal reported on federal subpoenas to unspecified parties related to his business dealings.
A litigation funder Virage Capital backed Pierce Bainbridge, the firm ran up a reported $65 million debt to Virage in one year. Severe red flags were presumably overlooked or ignored, which raises more questions.
Edwards, a member of the Middlebury College Board of Trustees, is a former lawyer at United States Securities & Exchange Commission. Interestingly, investor solicitation materials for a Pierce Bainbridge tied litigation fund contain dubious representations. The current status of the fund is unclear.
Denver Edwards lied under oath for John Pierce, two months later, Pierce was the subject of a domestic violence restraining order. In reporting on the mess at Pierce Bainbridge, the Daily Beast referenced text messages which led to the restraining order. Copies of some of those texts John Pierce sent to the mother of his children are below. (Mother Jones reported on this as well.)
Pierce also was accused of breaching child support obligations. $65 million in funding from Virage Capital, $5 million more in cash advances, $90,000 or more from Citibank, yet Pierce’s former spouse declared under penalty of perjury . . .
Denver G. Edwards appears to have been all-in with John Pierce.
While approximately 50–60 attorneys quit over several months, Edwards remained until Pierce Bainbridge was reduced to almost nothing.
In what appears a textbook case of projection, Edwards once accused New York State Attorney General Letitia James of “lies in her cases,” in his public Facebook postings. We take this with a heavy grain of salt.
Denver G. Edwards has moved on to Bradford Edwards & Varlack LLP. He’s preaching diversity. Based on personal experience, this seems remarkably phony.
As for Denver’s guy John Piece, he’s hailed Kenosha shooter Kyle Rittenhouse as some type of American hero, in his public Twitter posting.
Former Pierce Bainbridge Chief Financial Officer, Kevin Cash, has joined Denver Edwards at the newly-formed Bradford Edwards & Varlack.
The month before Edwards lied under oath, Pierce Bainbridge received a $28.5 million commitment from Virage Capital, Cash was also hired by the firm in this general timeframe.
Update/Addendum: Apparent Culture of Dishonesty at Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht LLP
- Ex-Pierce Bainbridge named-partner David Hecht was accused by a former associate in May of lying to a federal court. Hecht is now with Hecht Partners LLP, he denies lying.
- A federal judge in a written opinion found David Hecht acted “inconsistent” with the ethical Rule of Professional Conduct on “dishonesty and misrepresentation.” This was in April 2019 while Hecht was at Pierce Bainbridge.
- Ex-Pierce Bainbridge General Counsel and named-partner Carolynn K. Beck has been accused of suborning perjury and spearheading a fraud on a court; a motion is pending. Beck is now with Goldstein & McClintock LLLP.
- Ex-Pierce Bainbridge partner Christopher N. LaVigne also lied under oath in a sworn affidavit accompanying the Denver Edwards filing. LaVigne is now with Withers Bergman / Withersworldwide.
- A Los Angeles state court judge in a written opinion found another ex-Pierce Bainbridge partner violated the ethical Rules of Professional Conduct. This was in October 2019.
- Marc Mukasey of Mukasey Frenchman & Sklaroff LLP withdrew from representing Pierce Bainbridge in March 2020 citing, among other issues, ethical concerns with continued representation.
- Ex-Pierce Bainbridge named-partner James D. Bainbridge settled for $11 million with the Federal Trade Commission after being accused of spearheading an $80 million scheme on the public involving companies he controlled; there was no admission of liability. This was in the mid 1990's.
- Bainbridge’s friend Daniel A. Fingarette (per FTC, aka William Burke) was also a target of the FTC action. Fingarette, according to John Pierce and his confidante Lauren Schaefer-Green, had some level of involvement with Pierce Bainbridge finances. Fingarette was sued in federal court in around 2012 for allegedly impersonating a lawyer. The alleged credentials Fingarette conveyed are remarkably similar to the credentials on Jim Bainbridge’s firm bio.