Scott Tenley is a former federal prosecutor and first-chair trial lawyer with over 18 years’ experience representing individuals and businesses in high-stakes criminal, civil, and regulatory enforcement matters. He is frequently retained to defend clients under investigation or charged by the Department of Justice for serious federal criminal offenses. He is also a respected advocate for businesses threatened with civil litigation or regulatory enforcement actions, particularly where trial seems unavoidable.

In his criminal defense practice, Scott has represented clients charged with a variety of white-collar and financial crimes, such as honest services fraud, mail and wire fraud, insider trading, insurance fraud, health care fraud, embezzlement/grand theft, money laundering, and sanctions-related offenses. He regularly achieves highly favorable results for his clients, which has included complete dismissals, declinations, reduced charges, and no-jail sentences.

Scott is also an experienced and effective civil litigator, having represented plaintiffs and defendants in state and federal courts and in alternative dispute resolution forums across the country. Among other matters, Scott was recently lead counsel in a multi-forum dissolution proceeding involving a Los Angeles-based hedge fund, which settled on extremely favorable terms. Scott has also defended client in breach of contract, intellectual property, fraud, trade secret, and employment discrimination matters.

Before founding the firm, Scott served for over seven years as an Assistant United States Attorney in Los Angeles and Orange County. In that capacity, Scott led over one hundred federal grand jury investigations and prosecuted dozens of prominent white-collar cases, including what has been described as the largest healthcare fraud in California history. For his work as a federal prosecutor, Scott was awarded the Department of Justice’s prestigious Director’s Award for Superior Performance as an AUSA in 2020 and was presented with the 2019 ATF Honor Award by the Deputy Attorney General of the United States.

Before his tenure with the Department of Justice, Scott was a commercial litigator and white-collar defense attorney in the New York offices of Wilson Sonsini and Latham & Watkins. In those positions, he represented clients in “bet-the-company” litigation and federal criminal matters and conducted sensitive internal investigators for corporate clients across an array of industries.

From 2007 to 2008, Scott served as a law clerk to United States District Judge Cormac J. Carney in the Central District of California.

Representative Matters

  • Represented entertainment industry executive charged with violating OFAC regulations by engaging in prohibited transactions with a sanctioned foreign entity.
  • Represented witness business in grand jury investigation by the Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, and U.S. Army Intelligence into alleged mishandling of export controlled and classified information by former employees.
  • Represented crime victim in connection with the federal prosecution of an employee indicted for embezzling over $18 million from the business.
  • Represented Hollywood actor and stuntman under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Services for alleged PPP loan fraud; no charges filed.
  • Represented Los Angeles-based retail pharmacy in connection with bulk cash seizure for suspect drug trafficking; no charges filed and seized funds returned.
  • Represented founder of propriety trading firm in Galleon-related insider trading prosecution in the Southern District of New York
  • Represented Chief Executive of packing company in embezzlement and tax fraud prosecution in the Eastern District of New York
  • Represented publicly traded online education company in connection with various state Attorney General investigations into allegedly fraudulent business practices
  • Represented energy company operated by the family of a federal public official in connection with Department of Justice investigation into alleged bribery.

  • Conducted internal investigation on behalf of regional broker-dealer under investigation by the SEC and Department of Justice for alleged market manipulation and failure to supervise
  • Conducted internal investigation on behalf of international manufacturing company regarding alleged malfeasance b accounting personnel
  • Conducted internal investigation on behalf of international transportation company in connection with fraudulent representations made during course of acquisition by U.S.-based company

  • Represented national mortgage lender in employment discrimination lawsuit seeking $500,000 in compensatory damages; case settled for $400.
  • Represented co-found of Los Angeles-based hedge fund in dissolution and fiduciary duty-related litigation in the Delaware court of Chancery and arbitration
  • Represented international apparel company in various federal court litigation and arbitration hearings arising out of trademark and licensing disputes
  • Represented founder of Hudson News in $300 million probate litigation resulting in complete victory at trial and the largest sanctions award in New Jersey history imposed on opposing counsel for engaging in frivolous litigation.