Morgan Lewis bolsters London investigations practice with senior Norton Rose Fulbright partner duo

City of London

Morgan Lewis has hired two partners from Norton Rose Fulbright’s London office, including global head of investigations Chris Warren-Smith.

Warren-Smith, who is joining Morgan Lewis in a global leadership role in the US firm’s white-collar, corporate investigations and sanctions practice, is moving to Morgan Lewis with dispute resolution partner Melanie Ryan.

Both joined legacy New York firm Fulbright & Jaworski in 2007 from Barlow Lyde & Gilbert.

Fulbright merged with Norton Rose in 2013, but the majority of the legacy Fulbright partners in London stayed in the US LLP post-merger, despite all relocating to Norton Rose’s City office.

Warren-Smith specialises in in the financial services and professional indemnity fields, representing major financial and professional organisations and insurers in connection with civil and regulatory proceedings, while Ryan has a particular focus on the banking, financial services, and energy sectors.

Morgan Lewis chair Jamie McKeon said: “Melanie and Chris are renowned in the global investigations space and will bring added recognition to our London office in the white-collar arena. Like many of our partners in London, they share broad scope disputes experience and will expand our elite litigation team serving clients in the UK and throughout the world.”

The news comes after Norton Rose Fulbright struck a merger deal with US firm Chadbourne & Parke earlier this year. A number of Chadbourne partners have opted against the merger – which is set to go live this quarter – by making moves to other firms.