Understanding The Advice-Of-Counsel Defense

Law360, New York (June 22, 2011, 5:02 PM EDT) -- The recent indictment and trial of a pharmaceutical company associate counsel has prompted renewed attention to the utilization of the advice-of-counsel defense in civil and criminal matters. In United States v. Stevens[1] the associate counsel was indicted for allegedly withholding documents from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration during its inquiry into whether the company was promoting “off-label”[2] uses of one of its drugs. The indictment alleged that the counsel obstructed an investigation, falsified documents, concealed documents and made false statements.[3]

Counsel steadfastly claimed not only...
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