Milberg seeks to ease ‘panic’ with new boss hired from Fried Frank

US firm Milberg Weiss Bershad & Shulman, currently under investigation for alleged fraud, has lured a new senior partner from Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson to troubleshoot Milberg through its legal worries.

Former litigation partner Matthew Gluck will join Milberg as senior partner from Fried Frank, where he had been since 1973, as first revealed on www.thelawyer. com (23 October).

Gluck said he had been nearing retirement age at Fried Frank and that he hoped to stem the exodus of lawyers from Milberg. “I don’t know why people have left except for panic,” he says. “It doesn’t strike me as rational.”

Milberg has suffered a spate of recent defections since the firm, and name partners David Bershad and Steven Schulman, were indicted in May by Los Angeles federal prosecutors for allegedly paying referral fees to named plaintiffs in shareholder lawsuits. Milberg stands by its not guilty plea.

In August the firm lost former name partner Patricia Hynes to Allen & Overy.

The indictment claims that the firm earned $216.1m (£114.82m) in fees from class actions between 1984 and 2005, and in the same period paid $11.3m (£6m) in “secret and illegal kickbacks” to client Seymour Lazar and Palm Beach lawyer Paul Selzer.