News


Sher Tremonte Files Amicus Brief in US Supreme Court Opposing De Facto Life Sentences for Juveniles

On Monday, August 28, 2017, Sher Tremonte LLP filed an amicus curiae brief in the United States Supreme Court on behalf of the Fair Punishment Project at Harvard Law School.  The brief was filed in two consolidated cases, Timothy Willbanks v. Missouri Department of Corrections and Ledale Nathan v. State of Missouri, both of which involve the Eighth Amendment’s protection of juveniles in the criminal justice system.  In two recent decisions, Graham v. Florida (2010) and Miller v. Alabama (2012), the Supreme Court limited the circumstances in which juveniles may be sentenced to life-without-parole. Petitioners Mr. Willbanks and Mr. Ledale were each sentenced to lengthy terms of incarceration for crimes they committed when they were under eighteen, for which they will not be parole-eligible until they are in their eighties.  They argued to the Missouri courts that these were effectively life sentences and therefore violated Graham and Miller.  The Missouri courts held that because both youths were sentenced to consecutive terms for multiple crimes (all arising out of the same single incident), the Supreme Court’s decisions did not apply to them.   In an amicus brief supporting the petitioners, Sher Tremonte argued that the Eighth Amendment’s protections apply equally to children convicted of multiple crimes as those convicted of one crime, and that any criminal sentence for a juvenile that exceeds the period of time necessary for rehabilitation amounts to disproportionate punishment.   The brief was filed on behalf of the Fair Punishment Project, a joint initiative of Harvard Law School’s Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice and its Criminal Justice Institute, that advocates for a fair and accountable justice system through legal action, public discourse, and educational initiatives.  The brief was authored by partner Justin M. Sher and associate and pro bono coordinator Noam Biale, who, before joining Sher Tremonte, worked on the merits brief in the Miller case.

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Sher Tremonte Opens Hudson Valley Office

Sher Tremonte is pleased to announce the opening of its new Hudson Valley office in Red Hook, New York.  The new office will focus on serving Hudson Valley’s growing business community, including companies in technology, hospitality, renewable energy, the arts, entertainment and real estate.  Through partnership with Legal Services of the Hudson Valley, Sher Tremonte will also provide pro bono legal services to individuals, seniors and small businesses in Dutchess and Ulster Counties.

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Sher Tremonte Files Chapter 7 Involuntary Bankruptcy Petition Against Fyre Festival LLC

Sher Tremonte partner, Robert Knuts, has initiated a potentially innovative solution on behalf of clients - a group of creditors - in filing Chapter 7 involuntary bankruptcy petition against the ill-fated Fyre Festival LLC. “We look forward to finding out where the money went.” Click here for the full article in the Wall Street Journal and Law360.  

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Sher Tremonte Prevails in Appeal Over Acquisition of Luxury Resort

On May 23, 2017, Sher Tremonte obtained a rare reversal from the First Department Appellate Division for its clients, an investment advisory firm focused on sustainable development and the firm’s principals.  Sher Tremonte’s clients advised investors on the acquisition of Aman Resorts, an international chain of luxury resorts.  After performing due diligence and negotiating the successful acquisition, Sher Tremonte’s clients were forced to sue the new owners for failing to pay an agreed upon package of advisory fees.  The Appellate Division denied the defendants’ appeal, which sought dismissal of all of plaintiffs’ claims, and granted Sher Tremonte’s cross-appeal, reviving the plaintiffs’ claim of unjust enrichment and holding that Sher Tremonte’s clients could pursue claims of both unjust enrichment and tortious interference with contract.  Erica Wolff argued the appeal on behalf of Sher Tremonte’s team, which also includes Justin Sher, Robert Knuts, Michael Gibaldi and Emily Burgess.  Read the full decision here.

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Sher Tremonte Wins Summary Judgment in Corporate Acquisition Case

On May 30, 2017, Sher Tremonte won summary judgment on behalf of its client, the former Chief Operating Officer of an avionics company, on all claims against him in a case stemming from the $64 million acquisition of his former employer, a satellite communications company.  The buyer of the company claimed that the sellers had misrepresented the status of the company in the due diligence process leading up to the acquisition.  The Honorable Jed Rakoff of the Southern District of New York issued an opinion dismissing all claims against Sher Tremonte’s client, which included fraud, negligent misrepresentation, and unjust enrichment.  Read the full decision and order here.   

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Sher Tremonte Wins Summary Judgment in Fraud Case

On April 21, 2017, Sher Tremonte won summary judgment on behalf of its client, the seller of a full-service medical laboratory, on claims of fraud and breach of contract.  The buyer of the company claimed to have suffered damages because the seller misrepresented the status of an inquiry concerning the company by the New York Attorney General’s Office.  Adopting Sher Tremonte’s arguments that the buyer had failed to establish loss causation, transaction causation, or justifiable reliance, the court dismissed the claims against the seller in their entirety. Read the full decision and order here.

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Sher Tremonte Partners Named Outstanding Women Lawyers in NYC

Super Lawyers has identified Sher Tremonte attorneys Justine Harris and Theresa Trzaskoma once again in its annual list of outstanding women lawyers in New York City. Ms. Harris and Ms. Trzaskoma were recognized for their accomplishments in representing clients in white collar criminal defense matters. Click here for the "The Top Women Attorneys New York Metro 2017" digital magazine.

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Sher Tremonte Adds Kimo Peluso As Partner

Sher Tremonte is pleased to announce that Kimo Peluso, a highly respected litigator with a proven track record of victories in a wide array of complex commercial disputes, has joined the firm as partner. Known for his brilliant advocacy, astute judgment and meticulous preparation, Mr. Peluso’s successes include claims under federal and state environmental laws, government contract disputes, False Claims Act cases, civil RICO and securities fraud claims, and intellectual property matters, among many others. He achieved a series of wins for an international manufacturing conglomerate in several lawsuits arising from a half billion dollars’ worth of New York City construction projects. Among his real estate litigation victories, Mr. Peluso obtained a federal court judgment defending a client’s title to the site of a $3 billion industrial facility. And in the financial services arena, he is one of the few attorneys ever to have obtained a complete dismissal at the pleading stage for a “net-winning” investor in a Ponzi scheme case. "Having known Kimo for over 15 years, I am delighted to have him join our firm's business litigation and investigations practices,” said Justin Sher, partner and co-founder, “Kimo has all the tools you want in an advocate.” “Kimo has tremendous depth as a commercial litigator,” said Michael Tremonte, partner and co-founder, “He brings with him such a wealth of experience in terms of industries and areas of the law, and he is aggressive and innovative in obtaining great results for his clients.” Prior to joining Sher Tremonte, Mr. Peluso was a partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, where he was the hiring partner for the New York office. Previously, he was an associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP, and Stillman & Friedman, P.C. A magna cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School, Mr. Peluso was the managing editor of the Harvard Law Review. He clerked for the Honorable Amalya L. Kearse in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. About Sher Tremonte Sher Tremonte is New York City-based law firm that represents companies and individuals in complex business litigation and high-stakes white collar investigations. Clients include hedge funds, real estate developers, technology startups, private equity firms, media companies, CEOs, entertainment executives and other attorneys.

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Sher Tremonte Wins Outright Dismissal of All Charges in NYC Council Election Case

Sher Tremonte LLP lawyers Justine Harris and Michael Gibaldi secured a total victory for their client, David Jones, in a prosecution arising out of the 2009 election of Debi Rose to the New York City Council, the first African American to be elected to citywide office from Staten Island. On March 13, 2017, Special Prosecutor Roger B. Adler moved to dismiss all counts against Mr. Jones – putting an end to a meritless prosecution that had lasted for years. The special prosecutor had named Mr. Jones, along with the campaign treasurer and campaign committee, in a 23-count indictment that charged Mr. Jones with grand larceny based upon a $5,000 payment that Mr. Jones had received for his work on the campaign. Ms. Harris and Mr. Gibaldi challenged the scope of the special prosecutor’s authority, moved to dismiss the charges, sought to unseal the affidavit seeking his appointment, and successfully compelled the special prosecutor to produce discovery over his objection. After over two years of fighting the charges, and on the brink of trial, Ms. Harris and Mr. Gibaldi convinced the special prosecutor that the case against Mr. Jones was, as the New York Times described it, a “colossal ball of nothing.” Twenty of the twenty-three counts had previously been dismissed on statute of limitations grounds, and on March 13, upon the special prosecutor's own motion, Judge William E. Garnett dismissed both counts against Mr. Jones, as well as the remaining count against the treasurer and the campaign committee. Learn more about this case: New York Times, "For Years, City Spent $300 an Hour Looking for $5,000" NY1.com, "Charges Dismissed Against Debi Rose 2009 Election Campaign" Staten Island Advance, "Five years and $500K later, criminal charges dismissed in Debi Rose campaign case"

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Sher Tremonte Wins Asylum for Syrian Doctor

On March 6, 2017, Sher Tremonte obtained a grant of asylum for the firm’s client, a physician from Syria. In the early days of the Syrian revolution, our client was part of a collective of doctors and medical students in Damascus that provided medical care to peaceful protestors demonstrating against the Assad Regime. The collective set up makeshift field hospitals and surreptitiously transported medical supplies throughout the country after numerous protestors were shot or beaten by government forces and subsequently arrested at government-run hospitals when they tried to seek medical care. Our client was targeted by the Regime for providing humanitarian care to demonstrators, and for being an outspoken proponent of democracy and human rights in Syria. In addition, he was threatened by fundamentalist militants for supporting secularism and speaking in favor of religious tolerance. Our client escaped Syria in 2013 and was able to reach the United States in 2014. Sher Tremonte lawyers Theresa Trzaskoma, Erica Wolff, and Noam Biale filed an asylum application in 2015, extensively documenting the dangers faced by medical professionals in Syria. On March 6, the application was granted and as a result, our client will now be able to stay in the US and continue his work here, providing care to military veterans as a medical resident in a VA hospital. Upon learning about his asylum approval, our client said, “This would have never been possible without Sher Tremonte’s limitless support and commitment throughout the last two years. Because of you guys, I can say for the first time in long, long years that I am a free man who has no fear of the future.”

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