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Clifford Chance has poached one of the Spanish government's high fliers to boost its public law practice in Madrid.
Pablo Mayor Menendez, 35, moves from the ministry of development where he was technical secretary general.
Menendez was responsible for a legislative programme for the state infrastructure reform in areas such as construction, civil aviation, energy, road, rail and marine transport and ports. He is also regarded as the architect of laws liberalising the telecoms industry in Spain.
It is believed several Madrid firms approached Menendez before Clifford Chance snapped him up.
While Menendez will not bring any clients with him, Clifford Chance's Madrid-based European managing partner Peter Cornell strongly believes that the new recruit will attract new work.
"It is fairly clear that he will attract clients. Menendez also knows the Spanish government very well," says Cornell. "This is a major coup for us, we are delighted."
The appointment brings the number of lawyers in the public law practice to eight.