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Simona Agnolucci specializes in high-stakes complex litigation, including intellectual property matters, class actions, white collar criminal defense and commercial disputes. Her clients include medical device manufacturers, brokerage companies, investment advisors, smartphone manufacturers, “sharing economy” technology companies and leading law firms. Ms. Agnolucci has been an active member of trial teams in state, federal and administrative court.

Ms. Agnolucci represents clients in complex investigations brought by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. She also conducts internal investigations for corporate clients and Special Committees. She has defended corporate and individual clients from allegations of economic espionage, trade-secret theft, tax evasion, accounting and revenue recognition fraud, insider trading, witness tampering, obstruction of justice, and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Ms. Agnolucci has an active pro bono practice, in which she primarily represents women fleeing gender-based persecution. Her groundbreaking pro bono work has been recognized by national media, including the New York Times.

Ms. Agnolucci speaks Italian, French and Spanish.

REPRESENTATIVE MATTERS

CLASS ACTIONS

Cotter, et al. v. Lyft, Inc.: We represent technology company Lyft, which connects individuals in need of a ride to drivers willing to transport them. This putative class action addresses an issue critical to the new economy: whether Lyft drivers have been misclassified as independent contractors rather than employees. In summer 2016, the parties entered into a proposed settlement that does not require the re-classification of Lyft drivers as employees. The court preliminarily approved the settlement in June 2016. The Fairness Hearing is scheduled for December.

Independent Contractors v. Caviar: We represent Caviar, a technology company that connects food-delivery professionals with consumers and restaurants that might not otherwise offer a delivery option. In 2015, we defeated a putative class action filed against Caviar, in which independent contractors offering courier services alleged that they should instead be classified as employees. The court dismissed the class-action claims and compelled individual arbitration on November 16, 2015. We are currently representing the company in an individual arbitration addressing identical claims.

Downey v. Public Storage and Perez v. Public Storage: We are defending the United States’ largest self-storage operator, Public Storage, in two class actions filed in California alleging violations of Business & Professions Code Section 17200 and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act. Both matters are pending in Los Angeles Superior Court.

WHITE COLLAR CRIMINAL AND INVESTIGATIONS

United States v. Walter Liew: In a two-month federal jury trial, we defended Silicon Valley engineer Walter Liew, who was indicted for attempted economic espionage and conspiracy to sell DuPont’s manufacturing trade secrets to the company’s Chinese competitors. The case was part of the government's effort to combat what it deemed as China's "persistent" industrial spying.

Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission v. Executive: We represent a high-ranking employee of a publicly-traded company in a complex Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigation spanning several countries.

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Public Company: We represent a Special Committee of the Board of Directors of a publicly-traded technology company in the investigation of alleged insider trading.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND COMMERCIAL LITIGATION

Edwards Lifesciences v. Corevalve Inc. et al.: We defended Medtronic, Inc. and its subsidiary, CoreValve, in a multi-patent case brought by Edwards Lifesciences in the District of Delaware. The patents at stake concerned CoreValve’s lifesaving transcatheter artificial heart valve. Although an injunction was initially ordered, we convinced the court to stay that injunction, and then later resolved all of the pending patent litigation with a successful settlement.

Apple, Inc. v. HTC Corp.: We defended smartphone manufacturer HTC Corp. from Apple’s assertion of six patents relating to user interface features. HTC originally was added to an action between Apple and Motorola that had been pending in the Southern District of Florida for almost two years. We successfully moved to sever Apple’s claims against HTC and HTC’s counterclaims from the litigation between Motorola and Apple, and to transfer the case to Delaware. HTC thereafter obtained a settlement to become the first Android handset maker licensed by Apple.

Simona Agnolucci specializes in high-stakes complex litigation, including intellectual property matters, class actions, white collar criminal defense and commercial disputes. Her clients include medical device manufacturers, brokerage companies, investment advisors, smartphone manufacturers, “sharing economy” technology companies and leading law firms. Ms. Agnolucci has been an active member of trial teams in state, federal and administrative court.

Ms. Agnolucci represents clients in complex investigations brought by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. She also conducts internal investigations for corporate clients and Special Committees. She has defended corporate and individual clients from allegations of economic espionage, trade-secret theft, tax evasion, accounting and revenue recognition fraud, insider trading, witness tampering, obstruction of justice, and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Ms. Agnolucci has an active pro bono practice, in which she primarily represents women fleeing gender-based persecution. Her groundbreaking pro bono work has been recognized by national media, including the New York Times.

Ms. Agnolucci speaks Italian, French and Spanish.

REPRESENTATIVE MATTERS

CLASS ACTIONS

Cotter, et al. v. Lyft, Inc.: We represent technology company Lyft, which connects individuals in need of a ride to drivers willing to transport them. This putative class action addresses an issue critical to the new economy: whether Lyft drivers have been misclassified as independent contractors rather than employees. In summer 2016, the parties entered into a proposed settlement that does not require the re-classification of Lyft drivers as employees. The court preliminarily approved the settlement in June 2016. The Fairness Hearing is scheduled for December.

Independent Contractors v. Caviar: We represent Caviar, a technology company that connects food-delivery professionals with consumers and restaurants that might not otherwise offer a delivery option. In 2015, we defeated a putative class action filed against Caviar, in which independent contractors offering courier services alleged that they should instead be classified as employees. The court dismissed the class-action claims and compelled individual arbitration on November 16, 2015. We are currently representing the company in an individual arbitration addressing identical claims.

Downey v. Public Storage and Perez v. Public Storage: We are defending the United States’ largest self-storage operator, Public Storage, in two class actions filed in California alleging violations of Business & Professions Code Section 17200 and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act. Both matters are pending in Los Angeles Superior Court.

WHITE COLLAR CRIMINAL AND INVESTIGATIONS

United States v. Walter Liew: In a two-month federal jury trial, we defended Silicon Valley engineer Walter Liew, who was indicted for attempted economic espionage and conspiracy to sell DuPont’s manufacturing trade secrets to the company’s Chinese competitors. The case was part of the government's effort to combat what it deemed as China's "persistent" industrial spying.

Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission v. Executive: We represent a high-ranking employee of a publicly-traded company in a complex Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigation spanning several countries.

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Public Company: We represent a Special Committee of the Board of Directors of a publicly-traded technology company in the investigation of alleged insider trading.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND COMMERCIAL LITIGATION

Edwards Lifesciences v. Corevalve Inc. et al.: We defended Medtronic, Inc. and its subsidiary, CoreValve, in a multi-patent case brought by Edwards Lifesciences in the District of Delaware. The patents at stake concerned CoreValve’s lifesaving transcatheter artificial heart valve. Although an injunction was initially ordered, we convinced the court to stay that injunction, and then later resolved all of the pending patent litigation with a successful settlement.

Apple, Inc. v. HTC Corp.: We defended smartphone manufacturer HTC Corp. from Apple’s assertion of six patents relating to user interface features. HTC originally was added to an action between Apple and Motorola that had been pending in the Southern District of Florida for almost two years. We successfully moved to sever Apple’s claims against HTC and HTC’s counterclaims from the litigation between Motorola and Apple, and to transfer the case to Delaware. HTC thereafter obtained a settlement to become the first Android handset maker licensed by Apple.

Class Actions 2017

September 08, 2017

This program will explore the recent SCOTUS decisions, key Circuit level opinions, and their impact on the plaintff and defense bar. Read more

Consumer Class Action Litigation Conference

01/13/2017

Simona Agnolucci will serve as a faculty member for this year's conference, which will explore and explain the changing landscape of consumer class actions. Read more

Simona Agnolucci Named One of California's Top 40 Under 40 Lawyers

05/15/2016

Ms. Agnolucci works at the forefront of two hot and emerging litigation trends. Read more

Lyft Settles $12.25 Million California Driver Lawsuit Over Employment Status

01/27/2016

Rachael Meny, Jamie Slaughter and their team removed a major threat to Lyft's business model when they settled a proposed class action lawsuit without classifying drivers as employees. Read more

Keker Attorneys Help Children Gain Asylum

12/29/2015

Thousands of unaccompanied minors fled South and Central American countries, and ended up in a complicated asylum and immigration system with no one to guide them through it. Read more

Ashok Ramani and His Team Score Win for Caviar in Independent Contractor Case

11/16/2015

Restaurant delivery app Caviar Inc. won't have to defend its use of independent contractors in court, a federal judge ruled Monday, steering claims against the company into arbitration. Read more

Keker & Van Nest Named one of the Top Pro Bono Firms of 2015

09/15/2015

Keker & Van Nest's sterling work on a slew of legal issues facing undocumented immigrants and major win to halt preemptive environmental litigation by Shell Gulf Oil of Mexico Inc., secured its place among Law360's Pro Bono Firms of 2015. Read more

Getting Into Court: How Junior Attorneys Can Obtain Valuable Courtroom Experience

08/12/2015

Simona and her fellow panelists will advise junior litigators on how they can broaden their skills and accelerate their careers by gaining valuable courtroom experience. Read more

PLI California Trial Advocacy 2015

08/05/2015

Stuart Gasner and Simona Agnolucci will serve as moderator and speaker respectively for PLI's "Cross-Examination; Trial Objections" panel. Read more

Court Rules San Diego DA’s Denial of Sentencing Relief to Juveniles Unlawful

07/27/2015

Keker & Van Nest worked with the ACLU to save children from being criminalized more harshly than adults. Read more

Prop. 47 also reduces some juvenile offenses, state court rules

07/27/2015

Keker & Van Nest helps create a brighter future for nonviolent juvenile offenders in California. Read more

Caviar Turns To Keker Team in Courier Class Action

05/14/2015

Partners R. James Slaughter, Ashok Ramani and Simona Agnolucci will help the restaurant-delivery app fend off claims it misclassified workers as independent contractors. Read more

Keker & Van Nest Elevates Three Attorneys to Partner

12/15/2014

We are pleased to announce the elevation of Simona Agnolucci, Sharif Jacob and Khari Tillery to partner. Read more

New Mission for Lawyers: Free Aid to Young Immigrants

10/01/2014

The Wall Street Journal profiles Keker & Van Nest's pro bono efforts to help Central American minors. Read more

Keker & Van Nest Grants $60K to Protect Unaccompanied Minors from Deportation

09/30/2014

Bay Area resources currently overwhelmed by more than 2,000 children seeking asylum. Read more

Top Immigration Court Hands Huge Win to Battered Women Seeking Asylum

08/28/2014

Simona Agnolucci, who represents asylum seekers pro bono, discusses the decision. Read more

Keker & Van Nest Helps Medtronic Reach Global Settlement in Heart Valve Patent Litigation

05/21/2014

The settlement wipes out two large jury awards that had raised the threat of an injunction against potentially lifesaving heart valve technology. Read more

Hot Topics in Trade Secrets Law

05/20/2014

Simona Agnolucci and her fellow panelists will speak at the Bar Association of San Francisco. Read more

Lawyer Sleuthing Uncovers Copying in Expert Reports

04/03/2014

While litigating a high-profile criminal economic espionage case, Stuart Gasner and his team were able to exclude an expert witness who submitted a report with major sections identical to Wikipedia entries. Read more

DuPont Trade Secrets Case Heads to Trial

01/06/2014

Stuart Gasner leads the defense in this high-profile economic espionage case. Read more

A Sex Trafficking Victory That Shows Just How Broken the System Is

08/29/2013

Simona Agnolucci, who represents women seeking refugee status, discusses the legal hurdles of gender-based asylum. Read more

Quyen Ta and Simona Agnolucci Named Lawyers on the Fast Track

04/19/2013

The Recorder selected 50 attorneys whose early accomplishments indicate they will be tomorrow's top lawyers and leaders. Read more

KVN Scores Another Victory in DuPont Trade Secrets Case

02/28/2013

In a victory for Keker & Van Nest, a magistrate judge ordered federal prosecutors to identify which documents - out of a huge trove of discovery produced - they plan to use at an upcoming criminal trial. Read more

Exec Granted $2M Bail In DuPont Trade Secrets Case

02/27/2013

Stuart Gasner, Simona Agnolucci and Katherine Lovett convinced a California federal judge to grant their motion for pretrial release. Read more

In DuPont Case, Accused Spy Hopes for Pretrial Present

12/21/2012

The man accused of selling U.S. trade secrets to Chinese companies could soon be released on bond, thanks to a push from Stuart Gasner and Simona Agnolucci at Keker & Van Nest. Read more

Simona Agnolucci Fights for Women Seeking Asylum

09/28/2012

Ms. Agnolucci's clients fled Albania, where they were ripe targets for sex traffickers. Read more

Simona Agnolucci Wins Asylum for Victims of Domestic Violence

01/10/2011

Ms. Agnolucci helped a mother and her daughters escape endless violence and abuse. Read more

Simona Agnolucci Recognized for her Pro Bono Work

08/23/2010

Ms. Agnolucci has an active pro bono practice, in which she primarily represents women fleeing gender-based persecution. Read more

Simona Agnolucci's Pro Bono Victory Sets Standard for Domestic Abuse Case

08/12/2010

The Obama administration granted asylum to a Mexican woman who was sexually abused and severely battered by her common-law husband. Read more

Pro Bono Spotlight: Simona Agnolucci

01/20/2009

Ms. Agnolucci was honored for her commitment to refugees and women's rights. Read more

  • Faculty, "Class Actions 2017: Litigating, Defending & Managing Class Actions," Bridgeport Continuing Education, 2017
  • Faculty, "Consumer Class Action Litigation Conference," Bridgeport Continuing Education, 2017
  • "Practical Trial Tips from the Frontlines," ABA Annual National Institute on White Collar Crime, 2015
  • "Cross-Examination: Trial Objections," PLI California Trial Advocacy, 2015
  • "The Criminalization of Trade Secret Theft Under the Economic Espionage Act, 18 U.S.C. 1831 and 1832," Bar Association of San Francisco's Hot Topics in Trade Secret Law, 2014
  • "Cross-Examination; Trial Objections," PLI's California Trial Advocacy, 2014
  • "Getting Into Court: How Junior Attorneys Can Obtain Valuable Courtroom Experience," Association of Business Trial Lawyers, 2015
  • Hope Without Borders,” Daily Journal, 2009
  • “Expedited Removal: Suggestions for Reform in Light of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom Report,” Hastings Law Journal, 2006
  • “Deportation of Human Rights Abusers: Towards Achieving Accountability, Not Fostering Impunity,” Hastings International and Comparative Law Journal, 2007