The global law firm Jones Day has announced that Jason S. Varnado, Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Texas, will join its Houston Office in December as a partner in the Firm’s Investigations & White Collar Defense Practice. Mr. Varnado has focused on high-profile white collar prosecutions.

Mr. Varnado is the most recent addition in a string of former federal officials who have joined Jones Day in Texas. He joins a group of several prominent lawyers in the Firm’s white collar and securities practices that includes former SEC Regional Director and Chair of the Financial Reporting and Auditing Task Force David Woodcock, former United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas Matt Orwig, and former Assistant United States Attorney and cybercrime lawyer Jay Johnson.

“Jason’s distinctive experience—significant prosecutions here in Houston, combined with the important roles in which he served at the Department of Justice in Washington—will bring real value to Texas clients seeking help with complex white collar issues,” said Nancy MacKimm, Partner-in-Charge of the Houston Office. “His assignments in Washington as the National White Collar Crime Coordinator and the National Cybercrime Coordinator gave him strong relationships throughout the Department. He knows how complex white collar cases are prosecuted by DOJ generally and he specifically knows the prosecutors conducting those investigations in Washington and elsewhere. Jason’s experience with cybercrime will be particularly valuable to Houston clients as cybersecurity and cybercrime are very much on the minds of Texas general counsel.”

As a lead Department of Justice prosecutor of complex white collar cases for 10 years, Mr. Varnado tried nearly 20 criminal trials to verdict, including winning convictions of the top accountants in Allen Stanford’s $7 billion Ponzi scheme, and argued multiple Fifth Circuit appeals. His government practice focused on high-stakes cases involving corporate fraud, investment fraud, bank fraud, health care fraud, intellectual property crimes, cybercrime, money laundering, bribery, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Mr. Varnado has served as the Deputy Criminal Chief of the Major Fraud Section since October 2014. Prior to beginning his government service in 2005, he was in private practice in Houston for four years.

“It’s not every day that you come across a lawyer with Jason’s combination of skills, credentials, and judgment,” said Ted Chung, global leader of the Firm’s Investigations & White Collar Defense Practice. “We already had one of the most robust global white collar practices, and with Jason and several other highly accomplished white-collar lawyers who have recently joined us in multiple U.S. and international offices, we’ve further enhanced our capabilities and capacity. Jason’s experience with, and deep understanding of, the Department of Justice will be a major asset for our clients in Texas and around the world.”


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