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Trial Lawyer Lerach May Step Down

Publication Date: 
June 07, 2007
NPR - Morning Edition
Scott Horsley

NPR Morning Edition interviewed Professor Joe Grundfest about the impending retirement of attorney William Lerach, who is thought to be "one of the nation's most powerful trial lawyers."

Lerach's current law firm and the firm he used to work for are the Coke and Pepsi of shareholder lawsuits, says Stanford law professor Joe Grundfest. Much of the credit or blame goes to the 61-year-old attorney known for his fiery manners and his frizzy hair.

Professor JOE GRUNDFEST (Law, Stanford University): In many ways, he was the most active, prolific, feared and - by some - hated plaintiff's class action lawyer in America.


Prof. GRUNDFEST: There are three main theories. One is what we call the Milberg effect. It was roughly at that time that the Milberg firm was indicted. The second theory is that since the middle of '05, the market has been strong and volatility has been low. The third theory is that there's actually less fraud in the market today.