Randall R. Lee


Partner-in-Charge, Los Angeles Office

Lee, Randall R.

Randall Lee is the partner-in-charge and founding partner of WilmerHale's Los Angeles office, a member of the Securities and Litigation/Controversy Departments, and a member of the Securities Litigation and Enforcement and Investigations and Criminal Litigation Practice Groups. He joined the firm in 2007 after serving as Regional Director for the Pacific Region of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) from 2001 to 2007.

As Regional Director, Mr. Lee was responsible for the Commission’s Los Angeles and San Francisco offices, consisting of enforcement, litigation, and compliance inspection programs covering nine Western states, including California. The first Asian American to head an SEC regional office, Mr. Lee led numerous significant and high profile SEC enforcement actions involving financial reporting and accounting misconduct, mutual fund abuses, auditor misconduct, FCPA violations, broker-dealer violations, municipal bond fraud, insider trading, market manipulation and investment fraud. He managed a staff of approximately 175 attorneys, accountants, compliance examiners and support personnel.

From 1994 to 2001, Mr. Lee was an Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) in Los Angeles, where he focused on the investigation and prosecution of complex business crimes, including securities fraud, financial institution fraud, tax crimes, money laundering and computer crimes, and served as a Deputy Chief in the Major Frauds Section of the US Attorney’s Office. As an AUSA, Mr. Lee tried cases involving securities fraud, bank fraud, money laundering, narcotics violations, and violent crime, argued appeals before the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and led long-term grand jury investigations.

Before becoming a federal prosecutor, Mr. Lee was a transactional lawyer focusing on mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings and general corporate matters. He began his professional career as an associate in corporate finance and banking at Bankers Trust Company in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

In 2014, Mr. Lee was selected to Lawyers of Color's 2014 "Power List," which recognizes the most influential minority attorneys in the United States. He was also named a 'Star Lateral of the Year' by The American Lawyer magazine in February 2008.  


Mr. Lee's practice focuses on SEC enforcement investigations, internal corporate investigations, white collar criminal defense, and complex civil litigation. He has represented public and private companies, financial services firms and corporate directors and officers in SEC and other regulatory and law enforcement investigations, examinations and litigation. In addition, Mr. Lee has conducted internal investigations on behalf of management and boards of directors.

Recent representative matters include representation of a large Southern California public company in successive SEC investigations, resulting in no actions brought; representation of a major Silicon Valley company in a US Department of Justice investigation; representation of a brokerage firm in resolving an SEC investigation for alleged failure to supervise; representation of a private equity firm in an SEC insider trading investigation, resulting in no action brought; representation of various banks in civil litigation in federal and state courts; and internal investigations for large financial institutions.

Honors & Awards

Publications & News


January 27, 2015

A 'Cop on the Beat'?: Why the SEC Should Adopt the Brady Standard

An article by Randall Lee and Tim Perry, published in Bloomberg BNA The United States Law Week Case Alert & Legal News Report, Vol. 83, No. 1097.

May 21, 2014

Randall Lee Honored Among Nation’s Most Influential Minority Attorneys

Lawyers of Color has selected WilmerHale Partner Randall R. Lee to its third annual "Power List," a list showcasing the most influential minority attorneys in the United States.

September 18, 2013

Meltdowns crank up muni-bond litigation

An article by Randall Lee, Michael Mugmon and Joel Fleming, published in the September 18, 2013 edition of The Daily Journal.

August 30, 2013

Following Supreme Court Ruling Against DOMA, Federal Court Blocks Additional Laws Barring Same-Sex Couple’s Right to Veterans Benefits

February 3, 2012

Lawsuit Challenges Defense of Marriage Act, Dept. of Veterans Affairs for Refusing to Recognize Legally Married Same-Sex Couples

March 29, 2011

Supreme Court Rejects "Bright-Line" Materiality Rule in Securities Cases

April 13, 2010

Assistant United States Attorney Joins WilmerHale's Los Angeles Office

Brian R. Michael joins the firm, bringing with him a decade of government experience

February 1, 2010

2010 Compliance and Ethics Predictions from SAI Global Law & Ethics Advisors: Securities; Insider Trading

An article by Randall Lee, published on SAI Global's website.

August 14, 2009

SEC Director of Enforcement Outlines Significant Changes Signaling Tougher, More Efficient Enforcement Environment

July 7, 2009

Q&A With WilmerHale's Randall Lee

A Q&A article with Randall Lee, published in Law360.

Speaking Engagements

Professional Activities

Mr. Lee is a frequent speaker on subjects relating to securities regulatory and enforcement issues, internal investigations, corporate compliance and ethics and white collar crime. He has lectured on behalf of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) in Bangkok, and on behalf of the US State Department in Tokyo. He is a member of the Law and Ethics Advisory Board for SAI Global.

Mr. Lee is a member of the Southern California Chinese Lawyers' Association and the Japanese American Bar Association. He is also a member of the board of directors of the Constitutional Rights Foundation and serves as a trustee of the Japanese American National Museum. He previously served as Chair of the SEC Enforcement Division’s Diversity Committee, as a member of the ABA Litigation Section Task Force on the Attorney-Client Privilege, and as a member of the board of directors of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center of Southern California.


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JD, Order of the Coif, University of California, Berkeley School of Law, 1989, Articles Editor of the California Law Review

BA, cum laude, with distinction, Yale University, 1983

Bar Admissions



The Hon. James L. Buckley, US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, 1989 - 1990