The Honorable Louis J. Freeh, Chairman
James R. Bucknam, Chief Executive Officer
John D. Behnke, Managing Director
Lawrence Byrne, Managing Director
Blake Coppotelli, Managing Director
Matthew Dolan, Managing Director
Walter B. Donaldson, II, Managing Director / CFE
Timothy P. Flynn, Managing Director
Joseph R. Guccione, Managing Director
Elliott Leary, Managing Director
Michael McCall, Associate Managing Director
John G. Rahie, Managing Director
Robert O'Neill, Managing Director
Steve Tidwell, Managing Director
Thomas O. Melvin, Director
Jose R. Hernandez, Ph.D., Senior Advisor
The Honorable Louis J. Freeh [Download VCard]
Louis J. Freeh is a Founder and Chairman of FGIS. Mr. Freeh also serves as Senior Managing Partner of the affiliated law firm of Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP.
Freeh was born in Jersey City, New Jersey and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Rutgers University in 1971. He received his Juris Doctor (JD) degree from Rutgers School of Law in 1974 and his Master of Laws (LLM) in criminal law from New York University School of Law in 1984. Freeh joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as a Special Agent in 1975, working assignments in the New York field office and later transferring to Headquarters in Washington D.C.
In 1981, he joined the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York as an Assistant United States Attorney. Subsequently, he held positions there as Chief of the Organized Crime Unit, Deputy United States Attorney, and Associate United States Attorney.
During this time, Freeh was the lead prosecutor in the "Pizza Connection" case, the largest and most complex investigation ever undertaken at the time by the United States Government. The case involved an extensive drug-trafficking operation in the United States by Sicilian organized crime members who used pizza parlors as fronts. Following the investigation, Freeh served as the federal government's principal courtroom attorney in the 14-month trial and won the conviction of 16 of 17 co-defendants. In 1990, he was appointed a Special Prosecutor by the Attorney General to oversee the investigation into the mail-bomb murders of Federal Judge Robert Vance of Birmingham, Alabama, and civil rights leader Robert Robinson of Savannah, Georgia. This case became known as the VANPAC case. After extensive investigation, a suspect was apprehended, prosecuted, and convicted.
In July 1991, former President George Bush appointed Freeh as United States District Court Judge for the Southern District of New York. While serving in this position he was nominated to be the Director of the FBI by President William Clinton on July 20, 1993. He was confirmed by the Senate and was sworn in as Director on September 1, 1993 where Freeh remained through 2001.
Following his many years of public service, Freeh accepted a position with MBNA America Bank, N.A., as Vice Chairman, General Counsel and Ethics Officer. In 2006, he served as the company's principal lawyer in connection with the $35 billion acquisition of the company by Bank of America and in 2007 formed FGIS.
James R. Bucknam [Download VCard]
Chief Executive Officer
Jim Bucknam is the Chief Executive Officer of FGIS. Previously, Jim was the Executive Vice President for Risk Management and Compliance at Kroll. During his thirteen years with Kroll, Jim held a variety of other management and executive management positions and was also responsible for managing large-scale client assignments, including due diligence engagements, internal investigations and monitorships.
Before joining Kroll, Jim served for more than three years as the Senior Advisor to FBI Director Louis J. Freeh, advising him on numerous matters involving domestic and foreign law enforcement officials and government leaders. During that time, Jim traveled extensively and helped shape the FBI's efforts to enhance its foreign law enforcement presence. In 1994, he received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for coordinating multi-agency efforts in support of the Attorney General's Anti-Violent Crime Initiative.
Prior to working for Director Freeh, Jim served for six years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, where he gained broad experience in federal criminal investigations, trials, and appeals. For more than two of those years, Jim served as a supervisor, responsible for managing the Assistant United States Attorneys assigned to the Narcotics Unit.
Jim received his B.S.F.S. degree from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in 1983, and his Juris Doctor degree from the Marshall-Wythe School of Law, College of William and Mary, in 1986.
John D. Behnke [Download VCard]
John Behnke has over 22 years of law enforcement experience, with 20 years at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). He began his career as a Special Agent of the United States Secret Service, after graduating with his Juris Doctor (JD) degree from Washington University School of Law.
During his tenure at the FBI, Behnke served in many significant capacities during his distinguished career at the FBI to include his tenure as a member of the FBI Atlanta SWAT team and as an FBI firearms instructor. He was selected to serve as Special Assistant to the then Director of the FBI, Louis J. Freeh, responsible for the planning and coordination of the Director's official travel to 35 foreign countries. Behnke also served as the principal manager and liaison for Director Freeh's visits to FBI domestic Field Offices and the FBI Training Academy in Quantico, VA. Prior to his assignment as Special Assistant to the Director, John was lead agent for the Olympic Park Bombing Investigation. As a result of his successful efforts in this investigation, the U.S. Attorney General honored John with the Attorney General's Distinguished Service Award.
Additionally, John was the lead agent in the investigation of the 1989 murder of Judge Robert Vance of the 11 th Circuit Court of Appeals. After this case was successfully prosecuted, John was awarded the Department of Justice's Dedicated Service Award by President George H.W. Bush for his outstanding leadership, dedication and self-sacrifice.
Lawrence Byrne [Download VCard]
Lawrence Byrne is a Managing Director of Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC. He is also a partner in the White Collar Litigation & Investigations Practice Group of Pepper Hamilton LLP.
Mr. Byrne has extensive experience representing clients involved in all types of government and internal investigations, as well as related trial and appellate matters. He has particular experience in antitrust, securities, class action defense, commercial, bankruptcy and First Amendment and media litigation.
Mr. Byrne served as a federal criminal prosecutor from 1988 to 1994. During this time, he served with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York and the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.
Recent experience includes representation of:
- Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, a global pharmaceutical company involved in the largest criminal antitrust matter ever prosecuted criminally by the U.S. Department of Justice and also handled the related civil class action litigations, all involving the worldwide vitamins industry
- Royal Ahold, the international food provider, in its historic, precedent-setting settlements with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice (through the U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan), where no monetary fines were imposed
- Deutsche Bank in all of its Enron-related litigations in the United States
- a multinational construction company in internal investigations into alleged billing fraud and related U.S. government investigations
- a global defense company in a U.S. Department of Justice investigation involving possible Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues and in a related civil derivative lawsuit which won dismissal in the federal district court
- The Royal Bank of Scotland in lawsuits arising out of the Clear Channel Communications transaction
- the joint administrators of Lehman European Group Administration Companies in U.S. Chapter 11 cases of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and related debtors and Securities Investor Protection Act proceeding of Lehman Brothers Inc.
- a global investment bank in their settlements with U.S. federal and state criminal and regulatory authorities related to U.S. sanctions programs that are administered by the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control
- a director of a major financial company in an investigation for alleged breaches of U.S. securities laws in the context of the proposed acquisition of two large corporations
- Aibel Group Ltd. in their plea agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice to resolve Foreign Corrupt Practices Act charges.
Mr. Byrne has been recognized by many agencies for exceptional performance. He received the Burton Award for legal writing excellence for his "Executives Confront New Extradition Threat" article (International Financial Law Review, September 2005), the Director's Award for Superior Performance from the Attorney General in 1990, the Special Achievement Award from the Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Criminal Division in 1993, and was honored with the Robert M. Morgenthau Award by the Police Athletic League of New York in recognition for his distinguished legal career in 2012. In addition, Mr. Byrne is listed in Benchmark Litigation, The Best Lawyers in America (white-collar criminal defense), New York Super Lawyers, The Legal 500 U.S. and is ranked as "Band 2" in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business. He was featured in Irish America's The Legal 100 and was named an honoree in The Irish Echo's The Irish Law and Order 50.
Mr. Byrne has a distinguished record of pro bono service, including representing and advancing the rights of crime victims in New York State, serving as village attorney to the Village of Pelham, New York from 2002 to 2003, and serving as a member of former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani's Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee.
Mr. Byrne is a member of the board of directors and executive committee for the Police Athletic League of New York City since 2008 and a member of the editorial board of Securities Litigation Report through 2012.
Prior to joining Pepper, Mr. Byrne was a partner in the New York office of Linklaters, where he served as the head of the U.S. litigation practice, co-managing partner of the New York office and co-head of the global U.S. practice.
B.A. 1981, magna cum laude, Hofstra University
J.D. 1984 New York University School of Law
Blake Coppotelli [Download VCard]
Blake A. Coppotelli is a managing director with Freeh Group International Solutions, resident in the New York office.
Prior to joining the firm, he was a senior managing director with Kroll Associates Inc., advising public and private clients on public corruption, government, regulatory, and/or corporate investigations, financial and investigative due diligence, internal corporate controls and governance, and ethics policies. During his ten years at Kroll, his legal and investigative experience enabled him to be appointed to various independent ethics oversight positions by public and private clients and/or concerns, and to serve as an Independent Private Sector Inspector General on numerous high profile matters. His current practice concentrates in these areas, as well as in white collar criminal defense.
Prior to joining Kroll, for thirteen years, Mr. Coppotelli was an Assistant District Attorney in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, ending the last four years of his tenure as chief of the Labor Racketeering Unit and Construction Industry Strike Force. Mr. Coppotelli also served as a senior investigative counsel advising other investigative assistant district attorneys on investigative strategies, legal issues and trial practice.
While chief, Mr. Coppotelli supervised the investigation into District Council 37, of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Union. The investigation secured the convictions of more than twenty-five union officials and nine corporations for grand larceny, scheme to defraud, and bribery. Mr. Coppotelli also supervised the racketeering and anti-trust indictments of eleven members of the Lucchese crime family, including the family’s acting boss, two capos, eleven construction companies, and numerous union officials from Local 608 of the Northern Regional Council of the United States Brotherhood of Carpenters, Local 1 of the Builders and Allied Craftsmen, and Local 20 of the Laborers International Union. Mr. Coppotelli further supervised the investigation of New York State Senator Guy Velella for conspiracy to receive bribes for influencing the awarding of public contracts.
In addition to the above, Mr. Coppotelli directly handled the 1990s investigation into bid-rigging within the New York City interior construction industry, resulting in the commercial bribery convictions of six of the top ten metropolitan area interior general contracting companies, their principals, and over forty architects, designers, project consultants, building managers, and real estate brokers. Mr. Coppotelli also was responsible for the investigation and conviction of the State of New York Dormitory Authority’s chief of court projects, and his first assistant project manager, for laundering and stealing in excess of $500,000 from the authority through the rigging and inflation of numerous contracts on the Bronx Supreme Court, the Queens Supreme Court and Family Court, Staten Island Supreme Court, and the Manhattan Supreme Court buildings. Further, Mr. Coppotelli was the prosecutor who investigated the Fulton Fish Market, and secured the felony conviction of the head of International Fishmonger’s Association.
Matthew Dolan [Download VCard]
Matthew C. Dolan is a Managing Director with Freeh Group International Solutions. Mr. Dolan conducts compliance reviews, internal investigations, security assessments, and manages compliance monitorships. Some of his work includes:
- Served as liaison to for nine audits and reviews over three year period for university under government scrutiny after audit revealed financial improprieties. In 15 months, he had executed over 50 major corrective actions to improve internal controls and financial practices.
- Conducted extensive internal investigation and compliance review of university alleged to have not properly reported sexual assault. Extensive review extended to sexual assault investigative procedures, whistleblower policies, Title IX, Clery Act, human resources, and ethics program.
- Testified before Congressional oversight board for university under scrutiny for financial and procurement irregularities.
- Led investigation of drug use at college resulting in improved student accountability and improvement in drug education and awareness.
- Performed legal review of university admissions policy in light of Supreme Court decisions on proper use of race and ethnicity in university admissions.
- Advised university on proper investigation requirements into allegations of sexual harassment complaints and alleged NCAA violations.
- Performed Title IX compliance review at Division I school addressing issues of equity in athletics in opportunity, scholarships, and facilities.
- Conducted global investigation for international sports governing association into bribery and corruption allegations of senior management.
- Conducted investigation into fraud and mishandling of funds by senior leaders of a national sports organization.
- Performed investigation into theft of intellectual property, trade secrets, and proprietary information resulting in civil action being taken against a former employee.
- Redrafted university board of trustee policies and bylaws to improve governance and oversight of university.
- Served as Ethics Counselor advising clients on organizational ethics topics to include conflicts of interests, financial disclosure, proper use of resources, and gift acceptance.
- Extensive experience in ensuring university compliance with information security and privacy laws related to Personally Identifiable Information and student records.
- Extensive experience conducting aircraft and vessel safety mishap investigations.
Mr. Dolan received his undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame in 1988, and his law degree, cum laude, from University of San Diego School of Law. He also holds an LLM in International and Comparative Law from George Washington School of Law.
Mr. Dolan served in the United States Navy as an attorney, and before that served as a Navy SEAL. He retired as a Captain from the United States Navy.
Admitted to practice in California
Walter B. Donaldson, II [Download VCard]
Managing Director / CFE
Walter joined Freeh Group International Solutions (FGIS) following his retirement from Bank of America / Merrill Lynch. As a Managing Director for the firm, Walter brings over thirty years of experience in areas of Risk Management, Audit & Compliance, Regulatory Reviews, Corporate Investigations, Data Breach Response & Investigation, Intellectual Property Investigations, Executive Protection, Computer Forensics and Law Enforcement. Throughout the course of his career, Walter has assisted both private and public corporations in complex matters involving criminal investigations and financial sector compliance matters. His results-oriented work style and proven acumen in project management, facilitation and implementation align strongly with FGIS commitment to integrity, superior service and dedication to excellence.
Prior to joining FGIS, Walter served as the Global Special Investigations Executive and Senior Vice President of Bank of America / Merrill Lynch. In this role, he was directly responsible for the oversight of fraud investigations in the United States, Canada, Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Additionally, he oversaw all investment fraud investigations, cyber crimes and on-line banking fraud globally. Walter managed a quality review process for regulatory reporting and conducted root cause analysis on internal audit issues and matters requiring attention by regulators. Walter managed all physical security operations across Canada including employee safety, threat management programs, building & campus risk assessments and uniformed guard services. He served as the corporate liaison for all law enforcement matters for Bank of America / Merrill Lynch and worked with Regulators on a global basis.
Earlier in his career, Walter served as the Director of Corporate Investigations for MBNA America N.A. His responsibilities included overseeing Internal Auditing, Compliance matters, FCPA, Country Risk Assessments, and Global Investigations. Walter reported to regulators from the OCC, FRB and FSA on a routine basis. He implemented a Workplace Violence prevention program and oversight committee, established the Ethics program, Code of Conduct and Hotline. Walter oversaw the Executive Protection of seven principals, their families and visiting dignitaries domestically, in addition to six expatriates located full time in Mexico City. Walter established three computer forensic laboratories in the US and abroad. He served MBNA as their Director for twenty years before the company's acquisition by Bank of America.
Walter is a graduate of the United States Coast Guard, Maritime Law Enforcement Academy. He is a Certified Fraud Examiner and holds multiple other security-related certifications. He has lectured on identity theft prevention and recovery, and computer forensics for the University of Delaware and Wilmington University Graduate programs. Additionally he taught first responders computer forensics at the FBI's National Academy. He has trained with Delaware State Police and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. Walter has produced white papers and been published in various periodicals including the Chief of Police magazine. He is a member of multiple professional organizations, including the International Association of Chiefs of Police among others. He has served as a board member for the International Association of Financial Crimes Investigators, and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors for Delaware Crime Stoppers, the State of Delaware Adult Protective Services Advisory Committee and the Autism Delaware Advisory Board.
Timothy P. Flynn [Download VCard]
Tim Flynn joined Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC (FGIS) in 2009 after retiring from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (F131) with 30 years of experience in law enforcement. While earning his Bachelor Degree from West Chester University, he served as a local police officer and with the Pennsylvania State Police. Flynn joined the FBI in 1986 and was assigned to the Miami Field Office where he specialized in Colombian based drug and undercover investigations. He was also assigned to the FBI Miami Special Weapons and Tactics team and provided tactical instruction for local police and federal agencies. In 1994, Flynn was assigned as an operator on the Hostage Rescue Team (HRT) based in Quantico, Virginia. Flynn participated in numerous domestic and international counterterrorism assignments and also led and participated in security details for the Director of the FBI, the Attorney General of the United States and numerous foreign dignitaries. As a member of the HRT, he provided instruction in tactics and other specialized training to local, state, federal and international tactical teams.
Flynn was assigned as the FBI Counterterrorism representative to the Australian Government to assist in the security preparations and planning for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Based on his experience in Major Event planning, he also participated in the planning and preparations for the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympic Games, 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, 2006 Torino Winter Olympics and the Republican and Democratic National Conventions.
While assigned as the Senior Supervisory Special Agent in Wilmington, North Carolina, where he initiated and led a joint Terrorism Task Force, Flynn was selected as the FBI's first representative to the Australian Federal Police (AFP) Counterterrorism Center in Canberra, assisting the AFP in training senior management in Command Post and Crisis Management operations. In 2007, Flynn was named the FBI's Legal Attache in Copenhagen before being promoted in 2008 to Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Charlotte, NC office responsible for criminal investigations, special events, SWAT operations and administrative functions in the field division. During his career in the FBI, Flynn has received numerous awards and commendations to include on two occasions, the United States Attorney's Office for Outstanding Drug Investigations and in 2009, received the FBI Directors Award for Outstanding Criminal Investigation.
For FGIS, Flynn developed and implemented the security plans and strategies for the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in Nigeria and the Under-20 World Cup in Egypt, which consisted of security plans for at least 8 different cities and assessments of numerous stadiums and hotels in each of those countries. Flynn has also conducted security assignments and reviews for numerous Fortune 500 companies, both internationally and domestically.Flynn has also led the investigative teams in compliance projects involving prominent international corporations, the Penn State University investigation as well as investigations involving allegations of corruption in the Asian Football Confederation and FIFA.
Joseph R. Guccione [Download VCard]
Elliott Leary [Download VCard]
Elliott Leary is a Managing Director with Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC. Elliott has over 30 years of experience conducting high profile investigations as a Special Agent with the FBI and as the KPMG Partner in Charge of the Washington, DC Forensic Practice. He performs fraud and misconduct investigations and risk assessments for leading national and multi-national corporations, many in the Fortune 100, as well as for public and not-for-profit entities. Elliott has assisted clients in the prevention and deterrence of fraud through the evaluation, development and implementation of anti-fraud programs and controls. Elliott has served as the chairman of the AICPA’s Fraud Advisory Group, on the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Subcommittee and the AICPA Anti-Fraud Coordinating Committee. He has lectured to private organizations and law enforcement agencies throughout the U.S. and internationally and been honored with numerous awards and citations from the Department of Justice, FBI and other law enforcement agencies. Eliott has his Master’s degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
Michael McCall [Download VCard]
Associate Managing Director
Michael S. McCall has served as an Associate Managing Director with Freeh Group International Solutions (FGIS) since September 2013 and was previously a Senior Consultant for FGIS since June, 2008. During his association with FGIS, he has managed complex investigations for corporate and individual clients in the United States and overseas.
As part of FGIS’ monitorship of a major multinational manufacturing and sales corporation under a deferred prosecution agreement with the US Department of Justice, Mr. McCall has led and/or participated in monitor teams assessing the corporation’s compliance programs at its subsidiaries in various European, Asian and South American countries.
Mr. McCall has managed complex investigative matters, advised on investigative strategy, and conducted sensitive interviews and witness development in the US and abroad, in a shareholder dispute for a major US hospitality and entertainment corporation. He has managed and conducted the investigation into allegations of breach of loyalty and self-dealing on the part of the CEO of an overseas subsidiary of a global pharmaceutical manufacturer.
Prior to joining FGIS, Mr. McCall served from 1983 to 2004 as a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, where he specialized in investigations in the fields of national security and organized crime. A fluent Russian speaker, he has extensive experience working joint criminal and counterterrorism investigations with the law enforcement and security agencies of the Russian Federation. He and his FBI partner led the investigation and arrest of the first major Russian organized crime figure to be successfully prosecuted in the United States. As a crisis negotiator, Mr. McCall has successfully advised US Embassy and host country officials in the resolution of overseas kidnappings of U. S. citizens. He is a recipient of the FBI Director’s Award for Outstanding Counterterrorism Investigation.
Mr. McCall graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1975 with an academic concentration in Russian language and area studies, and was commissioned in the infantry, serving until 1983 and attaining the rank of captain. His four years of service in the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) culminated in the successful command of an air assault rifle company, and were followed by assignment as an assistant professor of military science at Tennessee Technological University. During his military service, Mr. McCall successfully completed Airborne School, the Infantry Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, Air Assault School, the Jungle Warfare Course, and various technical and tactical courses for combat arms officers.
John G. Rahie [Download VCard]
John G. Rahie joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP ("FSS") on October 1, 2009. Prior to joining FSS, Rahie was the Executive Director of Global Investigations for General Motors Corporation based in Detroit, Michigan. He was a member of the General Motors Legal Staff, specializing in compliance and ethics matters. In his 30 years with General Motors Legal Staff, he held a number of positions including General Counsel of GM Europe based in Zurich. He has extensive experience in compliance and corporate governance issues and served as a member of GM's Senior Management Compliance Committee. He also served as the GM Global Process Leader for Special Investigations and Anti-Corruption Activities, conducting sensitive "white-collar" investigations for GM throughout the world and directing its FCPA and anti-corruption compliance programs.
Rahie holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (BEE) degree from Kettering University, a Juris Doctor (JD) from Michigan State University School of Law and a Master of Laws (LLM) from Wayne State University. He is a member of the Michigan State Bar and the American Bar Association.
Robert O'Neill [Download VCard]
On July 9, 2013, Robert (“Bobby”) E. O’Neill joined the Freeh Group International Solutions, LLC (FGIS) as a Managing Director. He is assigned to the office in Miami, Florida. Prior to joining FGIS, Mr. O’Neill served as the United States Attorney for the Middle District of Florida. He was appointed by President Obama on October 5, 2010. Mr. O’Neill also previously served as the United States Attorney from 2007 to 2008 under then President Bush.
Bobby began his legal career at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office where he served as an Assistant District Attorney under the legendary Robert Morgenthau. In that office, he prosecuted all types of state criminal cases, ranging from misdemeanors to homicides. Coincidentally, Bobby’s office mate was Cyrus Vance, Jr., the current District Attorney in New York County.
After developing some trial skills in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, Mr. O’Neill joined the United States Department of Justice. He became an Assistant United States Attorney in the United States Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of Florida. Bobby was assigned to the Miami Division. While in that office, he prosecuted all types of federal criminal cases, including arms export control act violations, violent crime, drug trafficking, money laundering and white collar crime. In addition to his trial responsibilities, he also held the following supervisory positions: Deputy Chief of the Major Drug Traffickers Section and Chief of the Financial Litigation Section.
Mr. O’Neill returned to New York where he entered the private practice of law. He joined a prominent firm in New York City, Kramer, Dillof, Tessel, Duffy & Moore. The firm specialized in cases involving allegations of personal injury and more particularly, medical malpractice. Due to the trial intensive practice of the firm, Bobby received substantial civil trial experience during his time at the law firm.
Mr. O’Neill returned to public service when he accepted a position as an Associate Independent Counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel (Adams) in Washington, DC. The office had been established to investigate allegations of corruption at the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. Bobby was assigned as lead counsel in a case involving allegations of corruption against a high level department employee. While that case was pending trial, Bobby accepted a position as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division. In that office, he was again prosecuting all types of federal criminal cases, including drug trafficking, money laundering, and various white collar offenses. While serving as an Assistant United States Attorney in Tampa, Mr. O’Neill was detailed to the Office of Independent Counsel to try the previously mentioned case in Washington, DC on behalf of the Office of Independent Counsel.
While serving as an Assistant United States Attorney in Tampa, Mr. O’Neill was again requested to serve a detail as an Associate Independent Counsel in the Office of the Independent Counsel (Smaltz). That office had been established to investigate allegations of corruption at the United States Department of Agriculture. Bobby was selected to be lead counsel in a case involving allegations of corruption between a business man and a member of Congress. In addition to being lead trial counsel, he also supervised the Independent Counsel’s office in San Francisco, California.
Mr. O’Neill, once again, returned to his position as an Assistant United States Attorney in Tampa. However, within a year or so, he was again asked to serve another detail. This time, Bobby was detailed to the United States Department of Justice to serve as the Deputy Chief in Charge of Litigation for the Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section in Washington, DC. In that position, he was responsible for supervising the attorneys in the section who were prosecuting narcotics related criminal cases throughout the United States. In addition, Bobby was assigned as lead trial counsel in the criminal prosecution of a former Deputy Attorney General of Mexico for money laundering.
When Mr. O’Neill returned to the United States Attorney’s Office from his detail at the Department of Justice, he began concentrating on cases involving public corruption and complex fraud. In addition to handling his cases, he was offered and accepted a series of supervisory positions. Those positions included Chief, Special Prosecutions- Public Corruption Section; Chief, Criminal Division; Anti-Terrorism Coordinator; First Assistant United States Attorney; and ultimately, United States Attorney. Throughout that period of time, Bobby continued to prosecute cases personally as the lead and, except in one case, the only trial counsel for the United States.
Mr. O’Neill was recognized for his achievements as a trial lawyer when he was inducted as a fellow into the American College of Trial Lawyers.
Mr. O’Neill graduated from Fordham University, Bronx, New York (magna cum laude) with a B.A. in Political Science. He received his law degree from New York Law School (cum laude).
Steve Tidwell [Download VCard]
Steve Tidwell joined Freeh Group International Solutions in 2013, following a 34 year career in law enforcement. He served eight years as a police officer with the Richardson, TX Police Department and 26 years with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Following his retirement from the FBI, prior to joining FGIS, he was a leadership consultant and served as the Executive Director of the FBI National Academy Associates, Inc.
He entered on duty with the FBI in June 1983, and served as an investigative agent in the Dallas, Mobile and Baltimore Field Offices, investigating narcotics, violent crime and gang matters. He served as a team member on the Mobile and Baltimore Field Office’s SWAT teams, in a variety of capacities. He was assigned to the Protection Details of the FBI Director and Attorney General. As a Supervisory Special Agent, Tidwell supervised gang, violent crime, and white collar crime squads.
He was promoted, in 1999, and served as Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Salt Lake City Division. In 2001, he was promoted to the Senior Executive Service and assigned as Inspector, Inspection Division, where he led teams in inspections and audits of FBI field offices and FBIHQ divisions. He was the team leader for the FBIHQ Flight 77 global investigative team following the 9/11 attacks.
In 2002, Tidwell was appointed Special Agent in Charge of the Louisville Field Office. During the sniper investigation in the Washington, D. C., area, he was detailed to serve as an On-Scene Commander and supervised the crime scene at the arrest site.
In May 2003, he was assigned as Deputy Assistant Director, Criminal Investigative Division, FBIHQ, with responsibility for the FBI’s White Collar, Public Corruption and Civil Rights programs. He was then appointed as Special Agent in Charge, Critical Incident Response Group (CIRG), responsible for the FBI’s special mission, aviation, crisis management/response, and tactical programs and assets. He served as the FBI’s On-Scene Commander for personnel deployed to support the Government of Greece for the 2004 Athens Summer Olympics. He was the FBI’s first National Asset Commander for major tactical and crisis incidents and was responsible for the FBI’s overall national response to Hurricane Katrina.
In 2005, he was designated Assistant Director in Charge of the Los Angeles Field Office, the FBI’s third largest field office with 1300 employees. In December 2007, he was appointed as Executive Assistant Director for the Bureau’s Criminal, Cyber, Response and Services Branch, comprised of the Criminal Investigative Division, Cyber Division, CIRG, International Operations Division, and Office of Law Enforcement Coordination. He was responsible for over 14,000 of the FBI’s personnel and the programs they supported.
He has been an adjunct faculty member of the Johns Hopkins University Division of Public Safety Leadership, a guest lecturer at the Naval Post Graduate School and Leadership instructor at the FBI’s Executive Development Institute. He is a graduate of the FBI’s National Executive Institute. He is a member of IACP, the FBINAA, ASIS, and serves as Chairman of the Concerns of Police Survivors Advisory Council. He is a recipient of the 2005 Presidential Rank Award for Meritorious Executive. He is a 2005 National Defense University’s Pinnacle Course (rising three star flag officers) Fellow.
Thomas O. Melvin [Download VCard]
Thomas O. Melvin joined Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP in April 2010 as an associate in the New York office. He received a B.A. from Georgetown University in 2002 and an M.Sc. from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2003. He received his law degree from the University of Notre Dame Law School in 2010, where he was a senior editor for the Journal of Legislation and was given the A. Harold Weber Award for outstanding achievement in the art of oral advocacy. Tom has worked at the New York City Council, the New York City Department of Education and the Washington, DC office of an international law firm. He was also a founding member of the Harlem Success Charter Schools and the Success Charter Network.
Jose R. Hernandez, Ph.D. [Download VCard]
José R. Hernandez is the CEO of FGI Europe AG, a Zurich-based, independent international risk management company. He is a former Pricewaterhouse-Coopers partner, bringing expertise in forensic accounting, corporate governance and SEC compliance matters. Since 2001, he has been living in Europe and has focused on assisting Audit Committees, CFOs and Chief Compliance Officers to address issues relating to accounting fraud and corruption (including the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act) in response to a United States or European regulatory inquiry. These matters include internal investigations; remediation of financial statements and related disclosure; and, assisting companies in presenting their remedial actions to the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Justice.
Dr. Hernandez holds degrees as a Bachelor of Mathematics and Masters of Accounting from the University of Waterloo (Canada), as well as designations as a Canadian Chartered Accountant, United States Certified Public Accountant and Chartered Financial Analyst. Most recently, he completed his PhD in Economics and Business Administration at the VU University Amsterdam (Netherlands). His dissertation is titled "Principles, Processes, and Practices of Fraud Prevention." He is a faculty at VU University.