David W. Ichel is a partner at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, having spent thirty five years at the Firm litigating complex commercial disputes and advising companies, boards of directors, industry associations and institutions on litigation-related issues, including serving as lead counsel on major litigations for Vivendi, Ducati, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Heineken, among others. He has been particularly active in areas of commercial fraud and contract claims, class actions, securities litigation, insurance company insolvency litigation, product liability defense, distributor termination, antitrust and unfair trade practice claims. He is admitted to practice in New York, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., the United States Supreme Court and numerous other federal Circuit and district courts throughout the United States. He is the Chair of the Board of Visitors at Duke Law School, where he also teaches Complex Civil Litigation. He is a member of the American Law Institute, the Board of MFY Legal Services, Inc. ( Chair 2000-02), the Product Liability Advisory Council and the Executive Committee of the UJA Federation-Lawyers Division.
Recent representations as lead counsel have included
- Representation of Vivendi and Seagram in connection with a RICO lawsuit brought by the Republic of Colombia alleging complicity in money laundering, securing Vivendi's release from the litigation;
- Obtaining complete dismissals for clients Heineken NV and Heineken USA and other alcohol beverage manufacturers of class actions in ten state and federal courts across the country alleging that alcohol beverage marketing targeted underage consumers and seeking over $2 billion damages;
- Obtaining reversal of class certification and negotiation of a favorable settlement for JP Morgan Securities Inc. in the largest consolidated securities litigation proceeding in history, the Initial Public Offering Securities Litigation in the Southern District of New York, as well as obtaining dismissal of the companion antitrust cases affirmed by the United States Supreme Court;
- Representation of Bank of America and various investment funds in one of the two largest U.S. life insurance company insolvencies in history, Mutual Benefit Life Insurance Company, obtaining more than 100 cents-on-the-dollar recovery for these clients;
- Representation of the investment fund plaintiffs Aurelius Capital and Fir Tree Capital in a highly publicized class action against "monoline" insurance holding company MBIA, Inc. and various of its affiliates for fraudulent conveyance and breach of the implied covenant of good fait and fair dealing in connection with the announced February 2009 MBIA "transformation" transactions in which the MBIA parent company stripped out more than $5 billion from its principal financial guaranty insurance subsidiary, MBIA Insurance Corporation, at the height of the recent financial crises, leaving the company insolvent; and
- Successful representation of Seagram in a three month trial involving Patron tequila, Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, Inc. v. St. Maarten Spirits Ltd. (Los Angeles Superior Court), securing a judgment for more than $30 million and defeating counterclaims for several hundred million dollars.