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In a rare Japanese lateral hire, White & Case has poached a partner from US rival Baker & McKenzie
New partner Shimon Takagi is also a dual-qualified bengoshi-zeirishi (tax adviser), one of just five in Japan. Bengoshi lateral moves between foreign firms are very rare, partly for cultural reasons and partly because Japanese-foreign law joint enterprises are still in their infancy. White & Case was on the other side of the last one when the firm's corporate partner Michael Yoshii left for Latham & Watkins this February. White & Case Tokyo partner Eric Roose said: "Takagi will have two roles - as a bengoshi he'll advise all our clients, primarily on bond investment issues; on the tax side, he'll advise private organisations and high-net-worth individuals." He will also work with the tax controversy group in the expanding area of tax litigation. Describing his reasons for joining White & Case, Takagi said in a statement: "This is an excellent opportunity for me to contribute to the expansion and development of a world-class law firm." Takagi was previously a partner at Baker & McKenzie's associated Japanese firm Tokyo Aoyama Aoki Law Office, and he joins White & Case's associated firm Kandabashi Law Office. White & Case regional executive partner for Asia George Crozer commented: "Shimon's appointment is part of a strategic move to increase our tax capabilities across Asia. We're very committed to taking the White & Case practice forward in Japan and throughout Asia."