Hartley M.K. West is a high-stakes trial attorney with extensive experience in cross-border government enforcement defense and asset forfeiture matters. Ms. West frequently advises multinational corporations, privately held companies, and executives facing investigations into alleged violations of fraud, corruption, trade secret, antitrust and money laundering laws. She also conducts internal investigations and reviews on behalf of companies, their boards of directors, and audit committees, as well as representing clients in fraud-related civil litigations – including false labeling actions, securities class actions and shareholder derivative suits – and founder disputes. She has handled matters involving the US DOJ, SEC, CFTC, FTC, and numerous State Attorneys General, as well as government enforcement counterparts across Asia and Europe. 

Ms. West is consistently recognized as a leading lawyer across legal publications. Ranked in Chambers USA in the White Collar Crime and Government Investigations category, she is described as “a brilliant trial attorney and a great strategist” and “incredibly intelligent, hard-working and very savvy.” The Legal 500’s client testimonials describe Ms. West as “competent, accomplished, and one of the top professionals in her field,” “extremely knowledgeable,” “a great strategist,” and “what makes this practice unique given her deep experience and hands on approach.” She has been named among the top Women in Investigations by Global Investigations Review and awarded “California Lawyer of the Year” for Criminal Law. Her cases have been featured in Wall Street Journal reporter Katherine Blunt’s book California Burning (2022), CNBC’s “American Greed” documentary Burned by Greed (2021), Pete Crooks’ book The Setup: A True Story of Dirty Cops, Soccer Moms, and Reality TV (2015), and NPR’s “This American Life” (2011).

In addition to her trial and investigations expertise, Ms. West has briefed and argued dozens of cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

From 2002 to 2017, Ms. West served in the Department of Justice as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California, including as Deputy Chief of its Economic Crimes and Securities Fraud Section. She also clerked for the Honorable John T. Noonan Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Prior to joining Dechert, Ms. West served as a partner at another international law firm.

    • California White Collar Crime & Government Investigations - Chambers USA (2021-2022)
    • Women in Investigations - Global Investigations Review (2021)
    • Top Women Lawyers - Daily Journal (2021)
    • Award for Excellence - Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity & Efficiency (2017)
    • Better Government Award - Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (2016)
    • California Lawyer of the Year Award - California Lawyer (2014)
    • Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service (2009)
    • Director's Award for Superior Performance - U.S. Department of Justice Executive Office for United States Attorneys (2003)
    • Compensation Clawback Crackdowns – An Emerging Enforcement FocusFCPA Professor, November 7, 2022
    • Why (and How) Public Companies and Traders Should Prepare for Regulatory Scrutiny Post-COVID-19 - Co-author, Corporate Counsel (April 2020)
    • Board Investigations of #MeToo Allegations: What 'Weinstein Clauses' Mean for Sexual Harassment Investigations - Co-author, Wall Street Lawyer (December 2018)
    • Mitigating the Risks of Bribery: Lessons From Recent Trends in Latin America and Asia - Co-author, The Federal Lawyer (January/February 2018)
    • Cross-Border Criminal Investigations Just Became More Complicated - Co-author, The Recorder (September 2017)
    • 2022 Global Enforcement Series: Views from the Top - Moderator, Women’s White Collar Defense Association (April 2022)
    • Women in Investigations Network Sanctions Panel - Moderator, WIIN (April 2022)
    • National Institute on Blockchain & Digital Currency: Enforcement Actions Panel - Moderator, American Bar Association (September 2020)
    • No Collusion? Developments in Public Corruption Cases - Panelist, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (June 2020)
    • Tips and Trends: The Impact of COVID-19 on White Collar Litigation and Investigations - Panelist, Women's White Collar Defense Association (April 2020)
    • Bimonthly Criminal Antitrust Update - Panelist, American Bar Association (April 2020)
    • Views from West Coast DOJ and SEC Leadership on Current Priorities and Recent Developments -Panelist, American Bar Association "CLE in the City Series" Convention (August 2019)
    • Views from the Top: Hot Topics and Trends in White Collar, Securities, and Antitrust Enforcement - Master of Ceremonies, Federal Bar Association, Northern California Chapter (2011-2021)
    • Crypto-Currency: Hot Topics and Trends in Criminal and Regulatory Enforcement - Moderator, Bar Association of San Francisco (September 2018)
    • Antitrust Investigation in Asia - Moderator, Innoxcell Conference (October 2017)
    • Landmark Criminal Trials: Contrasting Cases for Corporate and Individual Prosecutions - Panelist, Environmental Trials Conference, Law Seminars International (October 2017)
    • Environmental Crimes - Speaker, Fidler Institute on Criminal Justice, Loyola Law School (March 2017)
    • Environmental Crimes and Appellate Advocacy - Faculty, U.S. Department of Justice National Advocacy Center (2016)
    • Women in Investigations Network, Co-Founder, Co-Chair
    • Women’s White Collar Defense Association, Northern California Chapter, Secretary
    • Federal Bar Association, Criminal Law Section, Chair (2017- 2019), Vice Chair (2013-2017)
    • Federal Bar Association, Northern District of California Chapter, Executive Committee
    • American Bar Association, White Collar Section, Member
    • Bar Association of San Francisco, Criminal Justice Section, Executive Committee
    • California Women Lawyers, Member
    • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Honorable John T. Noonan Jr.