Raft of US firms advise as billionaire Cuban wins epic and costly battle with SEC

Brown Rudnick, Latham & Watkins and Cooley have advised billionaire Mark Cuban regarding an insider trading complaint brought by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) which the basketball team owner has now won. 

Cuban, who owns the Dallas Mavericks, was cleared by a Texas jury last week after he was accused of committing insider trading when he sold his stake in Canadian search company Mamma.com in 2004. 

Brown Rudnick picked up the work after hiring the head of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck’s white-collar criminal defense and investigations group, Stephen Best, in May. He is understood to have advised Cuban since the original lawsuit was filed in 2008, when Best was co-head of white-collar crime and investigations at the now-defunct Dewey & LeBoeuf. 

Latham & Watkins’ New York-based litigation partner Christopher Clark also advised Cuban on the case, alongside Thomas Melsheimer of US firm Fish & Richardson and Cooley’s Washington DC-based securities litigation partner Lyle Roberts. The SEC was represented by its senior attorney Jan Folena.

Cuban, who is estimated by Forbes magazine to have a net worth of $2.5bn, allegedly said after the ruling that he had spent more on fees for lawyers than the fines he would have faced if the jury ruled in favour of the SEC. It is not known if Cuban is now going to seek repayment of legal fees, thought to be over $2m.

The jury claimed that the SEC failed to prove key elements of its case, including the claim that Cuban agreed to keep certain information confidential and not trade on it.