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.