Richard L. Beizer

Of Counsel

  • White Collar and Civil Litigation, False Claims Act litigator, Investigations

  • Former Assistant U.S. Attorney and Chief of the Fraud Division for the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia

  • Best Lawyers in America, Super Lawyer and Chambers ranked

About

Rick Beizer is a trial lawyer with years of experience first gained in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, where he served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and then at Crowell & Moring before joining Nichols Liu.  Rick is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. He has been recognized by clients and peers as a top lawyer in Chambers USA in the area of White Collar Crime and Government Investigations. Rick has also been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America, Super LawyersBest Lawyers, Euromoney’s World’s Leading White Collar Crime Lawyers, Corporate Counsel magazine’s Best Lawyers in Criminal Defense, and Washingtonian magazine’s Top Lawyers in the area of White Collar Criminal Defense.

Rick devotes most of his time to the defense of companies and individuals involved in a broad array of white collar criminal grand jury investigations and trials. Rick also defends companies and individuals accused of civil violations of the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. § 3729 et seq., litigates complex commercial disputes, and conducts internal corporate compliance investigations.

With respect to his criminal practice, Rick has undertaken representation in a number of substantive areas. These have included government contract labor mischarging, product substitution, and violations of the Truth in Negotiations Act; Foreign Corrupt Practices Act; financial reporting; environmental laws, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act; the Oil Pollution Act, and RCRA; Medicare and Medicaid; export control; mortgage fraud; and bribery, public corruption, “revolving door,” and conflict of interest.

Rick’s recent representations have included clients who are subjects in investigations of FCPA violations and investigations of spot trading in the foreign exchange market. In a recent criminal investigation, Rick negotiated a non-prosecution agreement for a government contractor under investigation for allegedly aiding and abetting a violation of the conflict of interest statute and for allegedly obstructing justice during the course of that investigation. In that matter, Rick also assisted in getting the involved government agency to lift a suspension it had imposed on the company’s chief executive.

On the civil side, Rick secured a win on summary judgment for a contractor accused by a qui tam relator of violating the False Claims Act while performing a contract to prepare technical manuals for the Army. He also assisted teams of lawyers in the trial and subsequent winning appeal in the case of United States ex rel. Purcell v. MWI Corp., D.C. Cir. No. 14-5210 (decided Nov. 24, 2015) and in the case of United States ex rel. Hooper. v. Lockheed Martin Co., C.D. Cal. No. CV-08-00561, which resulted in a complete jury verdict in favor of his client. In addition, Rick led a team that scored a significant victory for Academi Training Center in a qui tam suit in the Eastern District of Virginia. Judge T.S. Ellis III dismissed the relators’ second amended complaint on both public disclosure and first to file grounds.

Rick also represented U.S. Training Center, Inc., formerly known as Blackwater Lodge and Training Center, Inc., several other entities and their former owner, Erik Prince, in the case United States ex rel. Davis v. U.S. Training Center, Inc., 1:08-cv-1244, E.D. Va. (Ellis, J.). Following extensive pretrial motions that resulted in a substantial winnowing of the relators’ billion dollar claim and dismissals of Mr. Prince, and five of the six corporate defendants, Rick and his team secured a jury verdict in favor of the sole remaining defendant.  On December 6, 2012, the Fourth Circuit denied relators’ multiple challenges to the rulings of the district court and affirmed the judgment. United States ex rel. Davis v. U.S. Training Center, Inc., 498 Fed. App’x. 308 (4th Cir. 2012).

Additionally, Rick served as lead counsel to a general construction company accused of fraud in connection with its work building the American embassy in Iraq.  In the district court, Rick and his team secured a summary judgment in favor of the client. That judgment was affirmed by the Fourth Circuit in United States ex rel. Owens v. First Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting Co., 612 F.3d 724 (4th Cir. 2010).

In a notable False Claims Act case, United States v. United Technologies Corporation, Sikorsky Aircraft Division, 51 F. Supp. 2d 167 (D. Conn. 1999), Rick successfully defended at trial a helicopter manufacturer from whom the government had sought $13.5 million in damages and penalties. Although during a DCAA audit for defective pricing, the company had offered to settle that claim for $435,000, at trial, Rick secured a judgment for his client on the FCA count and limited the government’s recovery on the defective pricing count of less than half the amount the company had offered.

Rick also secured a victory for Sikorsky in United States ex rel. Monda v. Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., 2005 WL 1925903, (D. Conn. Aug. 11, 2005). In that qui tam case filed by a DCAA auditor, Rick convinced the court to dismiss the complaint with prejudice on the ground that it failed to plead fraud with particularity in contravention of the requirement of Fed. R. Civ. P. 9(b). Following Rick’s oral argument, the Second Circuit, by summary order, affirmed the dismissal.

As noted, Rick served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia, including two years as Chief of that office’s Fraud Division. In that role, he was responsible for overseeing the investigation and prosecution of some of the office’s most sensitive cases, including those against Congressmen and senior Executive Branch officials. A chapter in the Evan Thomas biography of the late Edward Bennett Williams, “The Man to See,” is devoted to a case, United States v. Antonelli, D.D.C. No. 78-00175 Cr., Rick prosecuted against Mr. Williams’s client.

Rick also served as a Deputy Independent Counsel in the 1984 investigation of then presidential adviser Edwin Meese. Rick’s involvement in that matter is described in James Stewart’s book, “The Prosecutors.” Before his stint as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Rick served as a law clerk to the late Albert V. Bryan, Sr., a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Rick received his B.A. degree cum laude from Harvard University and his J.D. from the University of Virginia.

Rick is a co-author of the Federal Publications book, “Government Contract Fraud” and a frequent lecturer on fraud and False Claims Act issues.

Rick has hosted television interview programs in Baltimore, Maryland. In 2008, Rick’s work was recognized with a silver Telly award. He has served as a board member of a charitable foundation and as a coach in youth soccer, basketball and Little League baseball. Rick’s hobbies include playing sports and reading.

Education

  • Harvard University, B.A., cum laude
  • University of Virginia School of Law, J.D.

Bar and Court Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • State of Virginia
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • District of Columbia Court of Appeals
  • Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • D.C. Circuit; Second Circuit
  • Fourth Circuit

Accolades

  • The Best Lawyers in America (2005, 2008, 2011-2017)
  • Super Lawyers (2007-2020)
  • Chambers and Partners (2007, 2015-2016)
  • Euromoney’s World’s Leading White Collar Crime Lawyers
  • Corporate Counsel magazine’s Best Lawyers in Criminal Defense (2004)
  • Washingtonian magazine’s Top Lawyers in the area of White Collar Criminal Defense (2004)
  • The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers (2008-2014)

Practice & Expertise

  • White Collar and Regulatory Enforcement
  • Investigations
  • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
  • False Claims Act
  • Appellate
  • Regulatory and Policy
  • Litigation and Trial
  • Administrative Law and Regulatory

Rick’s recent representations have included clients who are subjects in investigations of FCPA violations and investigations of spot trading in the foreign exchange market. In a recent criminal investigation, Rick negotiated a non-prosecution agreement for a government contractor under investigation for allegedly aiding and abetting a violation of the conflict of interest statute and for allegedly obstructing justice during the course of that investigation. In that matter, Rick also assisted in getting the involved government agency to lift a suspension it had imposed on the company’s chief executive.

On the civil side, Rick recently secured a win on summary judgment for a contractor accused by a qui tam relator of violating the False Claims Act while performing a contract to prepare technical manuals for the Army. He also assisted teams of Crowell & Moring lawyers in the trial and subsequent winning appeal in the case of United States ex rel. Purcell v. MWI Corp., D.C. Cir. No. 14-5210 (decided Nov. 24, 2015) and in the case of United States ex rel. Hooper. v. Lockheed Martin Co., C.D. Cal. No. CV-08-00561, which resulted in a complete  jury verdict in favor of Crowell & Moring’s client. In addition, Rick led a team that scored a significant victory for Academi Training Center in a qui tam suit in the Eastern District of Virginia. Judge T.S. Ellis III dismissed the relators’ second amended complaint on both public disclosure and first to file grounds. See United States ex rel. Beauchamp v. Academi Training Center, Inc., 933 F. Supp. 2d 825 (E.D. Va. 2013).

Rick also represented U.S. Training Center, Inc., formerly known as Blackwater Lodge and Training Center, Inc., several other entities and their former owner, Erik Prince, in the case United States ex rel. Davis v. U.S. Training Center, Inc., 1:08-cv-1244, E.D. Va. (Ellis, J.). Following extensive pretrial motions that resulted in a substantial winnowing of the relators’ billion dollar claim and dismissals of Mr. Prince, and five of the six corporate defendants, Rick and his team secured a jury verdict in favor of the sole remaining defendant.  On December 6, 2012, the Fourth Circuit denied relators’ multiple challenges to the rulings of the district court and affirmed the judgment. United States ex rel. Davis v. U.S. Training Center, Inc., 498 Fed. App’x. 308 (4th Cir. 2012).

Additionally, Rick served as lead counsel to a general construction company accused of fraud in connection with its work building the American embassy in Iraq.  In the district court, Rick and his team secured a summary judgment in favor of the client. That judgment was affirmed by the Fourth Circuit in United States ex rel. Owens v. First Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting Co., 612 F.3d 724 (4th Cir. 2010).

In a notable False Claims Act case, United States v. United Technologies Corporation, Sikorsky Aircraft Division, 51 F. Supp. 2d 167 (D. Conn. 1999), Rick successfully defended at trial a helicopter manufacturer from whom the government had sought $13.5 million in damages and penalties. Although during a DCAA audit for defective pricing, the company had offered to settle that claim for $435,000, at trial, Rick secured a judgment for his client on the FCA count and limited the government’s recovery on the defective pricing count of less than half the amount the company had offered.

Rick also secured a victory for Sikorsky in United States ex rel. Monda v. Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., 2005 WL 1925903, (D. Conn. Aug. 11, 2005). In that qui tam case filed by a DCAA auditor, Rick convinced the court to dismiss the complaint with prejudice on the ground that it failed to plead fraud with particularity in contravention of the requirement of Fed. R. Civ. P. 9(b). Following Rick’s oral argument, the Second Circuit, by summary order, affirmed the dismissal.

Before joining Crowell & Moring in 1983, Rick, as noted, served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia, including two years as chief of that office’s Fraud Division. In that role, he was responsible for overseeing the investigation and prosecution of some of the office’s most sensitive cases, including those against Congressmen and senior Executive Branch officials. A chapter in the Evan Thomas biography of the late Edward Bennett Williams, “The Man to See,” is devoted to a case, United States v. Antonelli, D.D.C. No. 78-00175 Cr., Rick prosecuted against Mr. Williams’s client.

Rick also served as a Deputy Independent Counsel in the 1984 investigation of then presidential adviser Edwin Meese. Rick’s involvement in that matter is described in James Stewart’s book, “The Prosecutors.” Before his stint as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Rick served as a law clerk to the late Albert V. Bryan, Sr., a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He received his A.B. degree cum laude from Harvard University and his J.D. from the University of Virginia.

In the News

In the National Law Journal (NLJ) special report “Washington Litigation Departments of the Year,” Crowell & Moring was named “Department of the Year” in the “General Civil Litigation” category. For this report, the NLJ editorial team evaluated litigation departments in the nation’s capital based on several criteria including biggest wins, revenues, headcounts, and operations. As a result of their research and findings, the team selected six “excellent firms” in this first-ever, Washington, D.C.-based contest. When asked about the firm’s key to success, firm chairman and Washington, D.C.-based partner, Kent Gardiner, remarked, “Clients bet on us because we bet on ourselves to win for them, and we collaborate to structure our fees around our ability to achieve success as they define it.”

Crowell & Moring’s White Collar & Regulatory Enforcement Group has been named as one of Law360’s 10 “FCPA Powerhouses” for its prowess handling Foreign Corrupt Practice Act (FCPA) matters. The Law360 editors noted, “With Foreign Corrupt Practices Act experience tracing back to the firm’s founding in the late 1970s, Crowell & Moring LLP has continued to make its mark in the arena, recently guiding Ralph Lauren Corp. and a Lindsey Manufacturing Co. executive to successful outcomes in FCPA cases.” The factors considered in selecting the winners included the number of attorneys at the firm working on FCPA matters and contributions to this developing area of law, including working on landmark FCPA cases, as well as client representations and outcomes.

Insights

Publications

In the News

Speaking Engagements

  • “Mortgage Broker Fraud,” ABA National Institute on White Collar Crime (2008). Speaker: Richard L. Beizer.
  • “Developments Under the False Claims Act,” ABA National Institute on White Collar Crime (2000). Co-Authors: Brian C. Elmer and Richard L. Beizer.
  • “Demonstrative Evidence: Primer for a Klutz,” ABA National Institute on White Collar Crime (1996). Author: Richard L. Beizer.

Meet the Rest of the Team