David Guerrero Liston, Partner
Mr. Liston’s legal career spans over 25 years in the public and private sectors, including five years as an Assistant District Attorney under Robert M. Morgenthau in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and more than 20 years in private practice during which he has successfully handled a wide range of civil, criminal, and regulatory matters.
His civil litigation experience covers a range of intellectual property disputes and complex commercial litigation. He has represented clients to enforce their patent rights, and has successfully litigated patent litigation cases on behalf of inventors against large multinational companies, including Microsoft, Salesforce, Google, and Waze. He has represented owners of television programs in enforcing their copyrights and trademarks against pirates distributing the programs over the internet. He has also represented clients accused of patent infringement. He has extensive experience with litigation funding and alternative fee arrangements.
Mr. Liston also advises and represents individuals and institutions in connection with white collar criminal and regulatory matters, and internal investigations. He frequently represents companies, institutions, and individuals who have been the victims of crime, including embezzlement and fraud. On numerous occasions, he has successfully referred matters for criminal prosecution while vigorously pursuing civil remedies.
He also counsels clients regarding Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and U.S. sanctions laws administered and enforced by the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control. His practice includes complex civil litigation with a focus on fraud and Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) claims, securities fraud, business, financial disputes, and judgment enforcement.
An experienced trial attorney, he is at home in the well of the courtroom, and he has handled numerous jury and bench trials and appeals in criminal and civil matters.
His skills as a negotiator outside the courtroom have been developed over decades of successfully resolving civil and criminal matters, drawing on his broad range of experiences in the public and private sector. His public speaking skills, powers of persuasion, and advocacy and negotiating abilities, have been sharpened by decades spent advocating, tirelessly and zealously, for clients and causes.
Mr. Liston served from 1994 to 1999 under Robert M. Morgenthau as an Assistant District Attorney in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office where he gained extensive courtroom experience through numerous jury and bench trials, hearings, and grand jury presentations, and where he supervised numerous investigations into identity theft, credit card fraud, official corruption, organized crime, construction fraud, welfare fraud, domestic violence, sex crimes, narcotics trafficking, and gang violence.
From 2009 to 2016 he served, by the appointment of the Mayor of the City of New York, as a Commissioner of the Civilian Complaint Review Board, which investigates and prosecutes citizen complaints against members of the New York City Police Department.
Mr. Liston serves as the U.S. Representative of Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar, advocating for Gibraltar in the United States, including in the U.S. Congress. He also serves as a leader of the Gibraltar-American Council, and as a member of the Board of Directors for the Gibraltar-American Chamber of Commerce.
He served as Chairman of Manhattan Community Board 8 for three years, and he serves in a leadership role with various community service organizations, including the Holy Trinity Neighborhood Center (for which he serves as President of the Board of Trustees.) He is a Subdeacon, and former member of the Vestry, at the Church of the Holy Trinity in New York City.
As he shares the firm’s commitment to pro bono and community service, Mr. Liston has, by appointment of the New York State Supreme Court, represented dozens of people pro bono in criminal matters including numerous jury trials.
Mr. Liston has run 10 marathons, nine in New York City as an honorary member of the NYPD Running Team, and one in Seattle, each in support of worthy charities, including Wheeling Forward, an organization that empowers people with disabilities. He has fought as an amateur boxer, boxing to raise money for the Sarcoma Foundation.
- Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Commercial Litigation
- Copyright and Anti-Piracy Litigation
- International Judgment Enforcement and Asset Recovery
- Litigation Funding and Alternative Fee Arrangements
- Patent Litigation
- Professional and Business Ethics
- White Collar Defense, Internal Investigations, and Criminal Referrals
Notable Work Experience
- Representing Internet broadcasting company in connection with patent infringement matters brought on its behalf, related to streaming media delivery systems.
- Representing leading cannabis vaping hardware company in defense of International Trade Commission Investigation, related to vaporizer hardware patents.
- Represented patent holder in connection with patent infringement matters brought on its behalf against Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies, related to automatic user interface generation for large databases.
- Represented patent holder in connection with patent infringement matter brought on its behalf against Fortune 100 company, related to real time vehicle guidance and traffic forecasting.
- Represented copyright holders of various Russian television programs in several copyright infringement matters brought on their behalf related to distributors’ unauthorized streaming of the programs over the Internet, mobile applications, and IPTV streaming facilities.
- Counsel to court-appointed receiver on multiple receiverships, advising receiver on a wide range of matters, including labor and employment law issues, contract disputes, ongoing litigation, regulatory issues, and Intellectual Property issues.
- Represented executives and employees of Royal Ahold subsidiaries in investigation of U.S. Foodservice by U.S. Attorney’s Office and SEC and in related civil litigation.
- Representing individuals in connection with proceedings before the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission.
- Represented the former president of Bank Al-Madina in a civil RICO case filed on his behalf in the Southern District of New York in connection with the multi-billion dollar collapse of Bank Al-Madina.
- Represented export company and its leadership accused by U.S. Attorney’s Office and the U.S. Department of State of export violations.
- Counsel to town planning board in connection with Establishment Clause and Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000 (RLUIPA) issues related to annexation applications.
- Represented Brazilian bank in connection with discovery in aid of litigation in Brazil.
- Represented international bank in connection with civil litigation related to Parmalat collapse.
- Represented sales executives in the criminal investigation of foreign pharmaceutical company for alleged off-label drug promotion and bribery of prescribing doctors.
- Represented senior executive of a telecommunications company in criminal and SEC investigations relating to alleged fraud in reporting financial results.
- Represented Big Four accounting firms in various federal securities class actions and malpractice actions.
- Represented accused at trial in first-ever criminal prosecution for alleged perjury before the National Association of Securities Dealers.
- Conducted internal investigation of major foreign corporation relating to whistleblower allegations of false financial reporting; represented company in resulting FBI and SEC investigations.
- Extensive involvement in drafting and planning motion to dismiss complaint against an international banking client in $150 million federal district court case involving RICO, fraud, and money laundering claims similar to those advanced in the Bank of New York-Russian money laundering case. Plaintiff dismissed the action without prejudice rather than respond to the motion.
- Briefed and argued case before the New York State Appellate Division that resulted in a substantial change in the law governing the de facto merger doctrine (Fitzgerald v. Fahnestock, 730 N.Y.S. 2d 70 (1st Dept. 2001).
Awards & Accolades
Mr. Liston has received numerous awards and commendations from the New York City Police Department, New York County District Attorney’s Office, U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of State, Manhattan Borough President, New York City Council, New York State Senate, New York State Assembly, the Mayor of the City of New York, and various community, civic, and charitable organizations, for his service to the City and State of New York.
Mr. Liston was selected by New York Super Lawyers (2015–2022) as one of the “Top Attorneys” in the field of White Collar Criminal Defense. He is a Fellow with the Litigation Counsel of America, which is a trial lawyer honorary society composed of less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers.
- Rutgers University School of Law, Newark (J.D. 1993), Senior Research Editor, Rutgers Law Review; First Place Nathan Baker Mock Trial Competition; Semifinalist, David Cohn Appellate Moot Court Competition
- Rutgers University, New Brunswick (B.A. 1990)
- New York
- New Jersey
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York
- U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey
- Law Clerk to the Honorable Richard S. Cohen, Appellate Division, Superior Court of New Jersey
- Commissioner, Civilian Complaint Review Board (2009–2016)
- Faculty, Manhattan District Attorney’s Trial Advocacy Program
- Member, American Bar Association, White Collar Crime Committee (2013–present)
- New York State Bar Association, Committee on White Collar Criminal Litigation (2013–present)
- Member, Executive Committee, Morgenthau-Vance Alumni Group (2000–2016)
- Member, Hogan-Morgenthau Associates (1999–present)
- Member, Executive Committee, Manhattan District Attorney’s Office Trial Bureau 40 Association (2006–present)
- Member, Irish American Bar Association of New York and Scottish American Bar Association of New York (2007–present)
Community Leadership and Public Service
- U.S. Representative of His Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar (2017–present)
- Chairman, Manhattan Community Board 8 (2005–2008) (Board Member, 2003–2019)
- Co-Chair, Landmarks Preservation Committee, Manhattan Community Board 8 (2008–2014)
- Co-Chair, Health, Seniors, & Social Services Committee, Manhattan Community Board 8 (2013–2019)
- Member, Manhattan Borough Board (2005–2008)
- Chairman, East 79th Street Construction Safety Task Force (2005–2006)
- President, Holy Trinity Neighborhood Center (2001–present)
- Vice President, 19th Precinct Community Council (2003–2006)
News & Publications
- “Getting the Deal Through: Litigation Funding,” 2017-2022 editions (co-author of chapter on litigation funding in the United States)
- “ITC Judge Details Why Cannabis Cos. Beat IP Investigation,” Law360, 3/6/23
- “An Inventor’s Court Win Over Microsoft Took Years—at What Cost?” Bloomberg Law, 7/29/22
- “Fed. Circ. Upholds Inventor’s $7M Win Against Microsoft,” Law360, 5/20/22
- “Netflix, Hulu, Disney Hit With Video Streaming Patent Suits,” Law360, 10/19/21
- “Microsoft Hit With $7M Verdict For Infringing Database Patent,” Law360, 2/18/20
- “Victoria’s Secret model’s boyfriend busted in AmEx ‘scam’” New York Post, 2/5/19
- “SEC Says Charity President Committed $9M Securities Fraud,” Law360, 10/20/17
- “The Pros and Cons of 5 Popular Alternative Fee Arrangements: AFAs are an Extension of the Partnership Between In-house and Outside Counsel,” InsideCounsel,” 8/10/12
- “Failure To Name Interested Parties Sinks PTAB Challenge,” Law360, 2/28/18
- “Part Of Map Patent Survives Google Challenge At PTAB,” Law360, 2/13/18
- “Google, Waze Hit With IP Suit Over Traffic Navigation Tech,” Law360, 2/22/16
- “What Your Colleagues Think Of Litigation Finance,” Law360, 12/11/17
- Speaker, 7th Annual Best Practices in Intellectual Property Conference, Tel Aviv, Israel, panel entitled “David versus Goliath. Can Your Company Make Money from Patent Litigation?”
- Speaker, Financing, Structuring & Investing in Litigation Funding, hosted by the Information Management Network
- Speaker, U.S. Department of State, International Visitor Leadership Program, for various State Department-sponsored programs concerning anti-money laundering, terrorist financing, international security, white collar crime, and securities regulation
- Speaker, conference regarding U.S. laws regulating imports and other legal issues related to U.S./Vietnam relations, hosted by the An Giang People’s Committee in Long Xuyen, Vietnam
- Speaker, Introduction to Manhattan Criminal Court, 19th Precinct Community Council