Calamity Jane Meets the Law: Pierce Bainbridge, Hecht Partners and Virage Capital (Videos and Links)
Rudy Giuliani hired the law firm Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht LLP for his issues with Ukraine. Despite receiving tens of millions in capital backing from a lawsuit lender Virage Capital Management, the firm cratered months after Rudy was aboard; spin-off firms like Hecht Partners LLP and Bradford Edwards & Varlack LLP were formed. Pierce Bainbridge founder John M. Pierce was hired by Kyle Rittenhouse after all of his partners, and around 60 attorneys, quit. The firm is tens of millions in debt and has been sued more times than one can count on two hands. This is a compilation of related videos and news reports.
We’ll start with a 2-minute video recently created by Jennifer Sulkess. It provides an overview on John Pierce, a University of Notre Dame and Harvard Law School graduate, who says Giuliani is a “close friend.”
The individuals listed below were Pierce’s co-name partners and also managing partners of certain Pierce Bainbridge offices.
- James D. Bainbridge (LA) — Bainbridge Law APC. The Federal Trade Commission had Bainbridge in its crosshairs for an alleged $80 million scheme on the public in his past.
- Carolynn K. Beck (DC) — Goldstein & McClintock LLLP. Accused of suborning perjury and spearheading a fraud on the Court based primarily on the sworn affidavit of an ex-Pierce Bainbridge attorney; a motion is pending. Messages strongly suggest Beck was aware Pierce was raiding firm accounts in 2018. Beck was the Pierce Bainbridge General Counsel.
- David L. Hecht (NY) — Hecht Partners LLP. Hecht’s honesty and/or ethics have been issues with several sources, including a federal judge finding Hecht ran afoul of the Rule of Professional Conduct on “misrepresentation and dishonesty.” In addition, three ex-Hecht Partners clients testified Hecht deceived them into signing up with his law firm Hecht Partners. Former Pierce Bainbridge partners contemporaneously opined negatively about Hecht’s perceived blind loyalty to John Pierce and general competency.
Let’s take a look at a 2-minute video overview of what went on at Pierce Bainbridge under the “leadership” of these individuals. The video was created months ago, subsequently revealed issues, which are not included, enhance the appearance of a severely troubled law firm.
Virage Capital Management is the litigation funder that poured tens of millions into backing Pierce Bainbridge. The funding started in April 2019, by April 2020, reports surfaced that the law firm owed Virage $65 million. Virage filed court papers last week which say Pierce Bainbridge owes the funder “no less than $59 million.”
Additional details on Virage and/or surrounding issues are contained in earlier Mediums, which provide links to articles from Law360, New York Law Journal, New York Times, Forbes, Daily Beast, Washington Post and more.
- “The $65,000,000 Question? Virage Capital, Pierce Bainbridge & Rudy Giuliani”
- “Virage Capital Money Mystery featuring Hecht Partners & Pierce Bainbridge”
- “Virage Capital infused tens of millions into lawyers who have needed to hire lawyers of their own”
- “New Virage Capital Filing Says Pierce Bainbridge Owes $59,000,000”
As the articles suggest, it is odd that Virage would commit tens of millions in capital to a red flag riddled firm like Pierce Bainbridge. We previously quipped:
“A cynic who watches Ozark perhaps may suggest that, providing tens of millions of dollars to John Pierce’s firm, seems as prudent from a legitimate business perspective as Marty McBird renovating the Blue Fish Lodge or taking an interest in the Lickety Splits.”
Pierce’s problems are wide ranging. The Daily Mail recently provided a heavily sourced look at the attorney. Among other items. . .
- Pierce was in a UCLA psychiatric facility
- Pierce lost his job at the K&L Gates law firm for physically assaulting a co-worker
- Pierce reportedly threatened to kill his ex-wife and mother of his three children
- Pierce is accused of breaching child support obligations and his ex-wife threatened to report Pierce to child services
- Pierce has had issues with alcohol and drugs including cocaine, and apparently did not see his children for at least four months due to failure to comply with alcohol and drug testing requirements
- Pierce owed over $1 million in taxes, $90,000 to Citibank, and $27,000 to his ex-wife’s mother, according to a statement Pierce prepared in November 2019
Post-Pierce Bainbridge meltdown activity perhaps invokes images of musical chairs, carousels and merry-go-rounds of lawyers.
For example, David L. Hecht claimed he resigned Pierce Bainbridge in March 2020. He even scrubbed the firm’s name from his LinkedIn, which he later restored.
Additional details covering odd activity of Hecht and his firm Hecht Partners are available at the links below.
- “Breaking up is hard to do.” David Hecht of Hecht Partners and John Pierce of Pierce Bainbridge.”
- “A Rotating Fleet of Law Firms.”
- “Hecht Partners & Pierce Bainbridge — Entirely Separate Law Firms?”
In addition, we had asked months ago, “Did the Temperament of the Lawyer for Kyle Rittenhouse Taint Operations at Pierce Bainbridge?”
It turns out Pierce’s seemingly violent tendencies and rhetoric has taken on elevated interest. The Hill Reporter penned a column this week, “Kyle Rittenhouse Attorney John Pierce’s Inflammatory Capitol Riot Tweets, Examined.”
Pierce has said Rudy Giuliani, in addition to being a former client, is a “close friend.”
Rudy called for “Trial by Combat” the morning of the attack on the Capitol.
Pierce had said earlier “There is a war coming” and suggested the Kenosha kill shots were the start of a Revolutionary War.
A 90-second video created by Jennifer Sulkess, “Trial by Combat?” or “Grifters Gonna Grift?” is illuminating. It focuses on statements and conduct of Pierce surrounding January 6, 2021, the day of the attack.
The same John Pierce — this guy — was backed by tens of millions in capital from Virage Capital Management. The same John Pierce who led the firm with his likely longest tenured former partners pictured below.
It’s is worth noting that scores of attorneys started at Pierce Bainbridge after these attorney, and scores of attorneys quit Pierce Bainbridge before each of them. That is, they were at Pierce Bainbridge with John Pierce before most, and they stood by and stuck with John Pierce the longer than most, even though a bunch of lawyers who started after them hit the escape hatch before them. Interesting.
Despite this seeming loyalty, Pierce recently suggested he was weighted down by perhaps a “Seal Team of Hacks?”
Here is the video, “Trial by Combat? Grifters Gonna Grift?”, it is an alarming and eye-opening 90-seconds of viewing.
As for John Pierce, as the sarcastic kids say nowadays. . .
“He seems nice.”