A&O partner resigns after arrest on child porn charges

An Allen & Overy (A&O) New York partner has resigned from the firm after being arrested and charged with distributing child pornography.

Edward De Sear, a partner in A&O’s international capital markets group, was arrested yesterday (14 July), appearing before a magistrate in federal court in Newark and was released on a $250,000 bail bond, according to Thomson Reuters. De Sear has now been electronically tagged by the court.

De Sear allegedly downloaded and distributed child pornography using peer-to-peer networks on the internet. If convicted, he faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

According to reports, because De Sear was charged by complaint he has not yet entered a plea, but will do so when he is indicted.

In a statement, a spokesperson for A&O, said: “Everyone’s been shocked and appalled by the news that a lawyer in our New York office, Edward de Sear, has been criminally charged by federal prosecutors in Newark, New Jersey, after being arrested at his home. He has resigned from the firm. This is now subject to a federal investigation and so we cannot make any further comment.”

De Sear joined A&O from Bingham McCutchen in August 2010 (3 August 2010).