Russell Johnston, a partner in King & Spalding’s Government Matters practice, focuses on internal investigations, regulatory inquiries, enforcement actions, and compliance counseling.
As both a former Senior Counsel in FINRA’s Department of Enforcement and in private practice representing multinational clients, he’s worked extensively with regulators worldwide on rules addressing anti-money laundering, anti-corruption, economic sanctions, securities fraud, sales practice supervision, and the use of crowdfunding and digital assets.
Russell has advised multinational corporations, across a wide range of sectors, on complex financial crime compliance matters. In this field, Russell has lead worldwide internal investigations, assisted clients in cooperating with regulatory inquiries, conducted due diligence prior to M&A transactions, and prepared corporate officers for congressional hearings.
Russell has also provided financial crime compliance training, best practices, and policy formation to both clients and fellow attorneys, and prepared a witness for the UK Parliament Select Committee drafting the UK Bribery Act.
While at FINRA, Russell served as the lead attorney on some of the organization’s most complex matters, including historic enforcement actions regarding anti-money laundering violations, sales practice supervision issues, and the most significant penalties and restitution programs emanating from the Puerto Rico debt crisis.
Russell also served as counsel on several of FINRA’s earliest fintech-related matters, including the first enforcement action addressing the use of distributed ledger technology, and served as the first and primary counsel to the funding portal examination program. In addition, he served as counsel on numerous matters addressing corporate finance and advertising regulations for public and private securities offerings.
- J.D., Northwestern University School of Law
- B.B.A., Villanova University
- New York
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
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