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Quinn Emanuel Defends Judge Alex Kozinski as Misconduct Claims Mount

[caption id="attachment_7405" align="alignnone" width="620"] Susan Estrich of Quinn Emanuel listens to testimony from former Equifax CEO Richard Smith. Credit: Diego M. Radzinschi [/caption] Federal appeals judge Alex Kozinski has retained Susan Estrich and William Burck of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan to represent him as additional women step forward to accuse him of sexual misconduct. The Washington Post reported Friday evening that nine women, in addition to six who lodged allegations against the longtime Ninth Circuit judge last week, accuse Kozinski of making inappropriate comments. Four of the women claim he touched them inappropriately.

Alex Kozinski. Credit: John Disney/ALM

In response to the latest allegations, Kozinski, in a statement read by Estrich to the Washington Post, said: "Many of the things that are being said about me are simply not true, but I deeply regret that my unusual sense of humor caused offense or made anyone uncomfortable." The latest allegations came on the heels of action by Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. on Friday in which he transferred a complaint initiated by Ninth Circuit Chief Judge Sidney Thomas to the Second Circuit. The Judicial Council of the Second Circuit will oversee the misconduct investigation. Estrich and Burck are co-chairs of their firm's crisis law practice. Estrich also is a law and political science professor at the University of Southern California and a legal and political analyst for Fox News Channel. In 2016, she represented former Fox New chairman Roger Ailes, now deceased, when he was accused of sexual harassment by a number of women who worked for him. Estrich recently appeared on Capitol Hill as a lawyer for former Equifax Inc. chairman Richard Smith, who resigned in the aftermath of the massive data breach at the company. Estrich, a feminist legal scholar, is the author of several books, including Sex & Power, Real Rape, and The Case for Hillary Clinton. A Harvard Law School graduate, she is a former clerk to Justice John Paul Stevens. William Burck, a former Kozinski clerk and former clerk to Justice Anthony Kennedy, is co-managing partner of the firm's Washington office and co-chair of the investigations, government enforcement and white-collar practice. He clerked for Kozinski in 1998-99 after graduating from Yale Law School. A former assistant U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York, Burck also served as special counsel and deputy counsel to President George W. Bush from 2007 to 2009. He was named a "Trailblazer in White Collar" in 2016 by The National Law Journal. Burck currently represents White House counsel Donald McGahn and former White House chief of staff Reince Priebus in Robert Mueller's investigation of Russia's interference in the presidential election. The latest allegations against Kozinski include Christine O.C. Miller, a retired U.S. Court of Federal Claims judge, who said the judge grabbed and squeezed her breasts as they drove back from an event in Baltimore in the mid-1980s, after she declined to have sex with him. Another woman said that when she was a student in 2016 at the University of Montana School of Law, Kozinski, apparently in an attempt to see her name tag during a reception, “very deliberately put his finger on the other side of my breast, and moved it, with some pressure” to the center. The Second Circuit investigation of the allegations will be confidential, according to rules adopted by the Judicial Conference of the United States. When final action has been taken on the complaint and it is no longer subject to review, all orders entered by the chief judge and judicial council, including any supporting memoranda and any dissenting opinions or separate statements by members of the judicial council, must be made public—with certain exceptions, according to the rules.   Read more: Susan Estrich, Lawyer for Roger Ailes, Was Leading Voice for Rape Law Reform Kozinski Harassment Inquiry Is Routed to the Second Circuit Here Are the Women Who Have Called Out Judge Kozinski DLA Piper, a Hacking Victim Itself, Helps Guide Equifax on Capitol Hill Quinn Emanuel Brings Back Its Real-Life Olivia Pope