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Matthew Axelrod , Dispute Resolution Partner, Washington D.C. 

“The risk that companies and financial institutions face from regulators is increasingly global and multidimensional. My 13 years at the U.S. Department of Justice, from in-the-trenches prosecutor to senior official overseeing all Department operations, have given me the insight, judgment, and experience necessary to help navigate clients through situations that can pose an existential threat to their business.”

Washington D.C.

Linklaters LLP, 601 Thirteenth Street NW, Suite 800 North, 20005



Country of Admission
United States

OverviewProfessional experienceEducation and qualifications

Matt joined Linklaters in March 2017 as a partner in the firm’s Dispute Resolution practice, focusing on the defense of institutions and individuals who are under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) or other regulators, as well as conducting internal investigations. Matt has nearly twenty years of litigation experience, having been both a federal prosecutor and a defense attorney.

Prior to joining the firm, Matt served as the Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General, one of DOJ's highest ranking officials and a member of the senior leadership team. Matt has received exceptional praise from Sally Yates, former U.S. Deputy Attorney General, who noted (in New York Times coverage on March 5, 2017) his “remarkable combination of intellect, drive, judgment and integrity” and described his role “as the most demanding job in all of DOJ, including managing many of the department’s most vexing and sensitive matters.” He advised both her and the Attorney General on every significant matter within DOJ, including all major Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Bank Secrecy Act, money laundering, health care fraud, and other white-collar cases and policy directives. Notably, Matt was heavily involved in the development and implementation of DOJ’s policy concerning individual accountability for corporate wrongdoing (known as the “Yates Memo”) and personally reviewed every corporate resolution over US$200m.

Matt also took the lead in advising on crisis management within DOJ, working closely with the White House, Congress, the FBI, and the media on DOJ’s most sensitive and high-profile matters.

During his time at DOJ, Matt developed strong relationships with senior officials across government, including on Capitol Hill, with regulators and law enforcement agencies, and with the country's United States Attorneys. He also received the Assistant Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service.

Matt previously spent six years as a federal prosecutor in Miami, where he tried 19 felony jury cases and argued three cases before the Eleventh Circuit. As well as his public service roles, Matt has worked in private practice for major law firms in Boston and Washington D.C.

Work Highlights

Recent highlights of his experience, much of which is confidential, includes representing:

  • a senior executive of an Asian company in a DOJ FCPA investigation
  • a South American company in a SDNY securities fraud investigation


Professional experience

Matt has been quoted or interviewed by numerous media outlets, including The New York Times, MSNBC, CNN, Slate and The National Law Journal:


Matt has also spoken at various conferences and seminars including:

  • Panelist, “Prosecutor Alumni Panel: What’s Next? How Has the Risk Map Changed? – How Life Sciences Companies Should Determine Where and How Much to Invest in Anti-Corruption Compliance,” 11th Advanced Forum on FCPA & Anti-Corruption for the Life Sciences Industry, New York, New York, June 28, 2017
  • Keynote Speaker, “Changing Enforcement Priorities Under the New Administration,” CIECI Spring Forum, May 17, 2017
  • Keynote Speaker, “An Armchair Conversation about the Deputy Attorney General’s Memorandum on Individual Accountability for Corporate Wrongdoing,” American Bar Association 26th Annual National Institute on Health Care Fraud, Indian Wells, California, May 12, 2016
  • Panelist, “Agency Enforcement and Prosecution of Regulatory Crimes,” Administrative Conference of the United States Workshop on Criminal Law and the Administrative State: Defining and Enforcing Regulatory Crimes, Washington, D.C., May 13, 2014
  • Co-Keynote Speaker, “Perspective from the U.S. Department of Justice,” Ethisphere Global Ethics Summit, New York, New York, March 5, 2013
  • Panelist, Defense Criminal Investigative Organization Panel on Parallel Proceedings and Debarment, Department of Defense Procurement Fraud Working Group Annual Training Seminar, Daytona Beach, Florida, March 29, 2012
  • Department of Justice Witness, “Current State of Federal Sentencing,” United States Sentencing Commission Public Hearing on Federal Sentencing Options after Booker, Washington, D.C., February 16, 2012
Education and qualifications

Matt obtained an undergraduate degree in English, cum laude, from Amherst College, and holds a Juris Doctor from Yale Law School, where he was Notes Editor of the Yale Law Journal.

Following law school, Matt worked as a law clerk for the Honorable Ralph K. Winter, Jr., United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and for the Honorable Janet C. Hall, United States District Court for the District of Connecticut.

Matt is member of Washington, D.C. and Massachusetts State Bars, United States.