A McGuireWoods team, led by Washington, D.C., partner George Terwilliger, vindicated former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock after four years of battling federal charges in Illinois by adopting the position from the start that the truth was Schock’s friend, as reported in an article by The National Law Journal.
In a lengthy interview with Schock and Terwilliger published May 31, the NLJ unpacked Schock’s decision to resign his House seat in 2015 amid a pending federal inquiry, and his decision to engage Terwilliger and McGuireWoods at the suggestion of a House colleague.
“He got it. I could tell he knew his stuff, I could tell I was going to like his demeanor. He asked tough questions. And I have said this: ‘If resigning from office was one of the dumbest decisions of my life, hiring George Terwilliger was one of my best,’ ” Schock said of his first meeting with Terwilliger.
After his initial chat with Schock, Terwilliger — a former U.S. attorney and deputy attorney general — said he saw that the government’s case against Schock was shaky, and that McGuireWoods had the perfect team for the job.
“We knew and decided very early that the real story, the truth, was our friend in this case,” Terwilliger said. Aided by McGuireWoods Consulting senior vice president Mark Hubbard, Schock’s defense team developed “a message that these are mistakes, but mistakes aren’t crimes.”
The McGuireWoods legal team included partners Robert J. Bittman, Christina Egan and Benjamin Hatch, all former prosecutors, and associates Rebecca Gantt and Nathan Pittman. All are members of the firm’s nationally recognized Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation Department.
In March, thanks to McGuireWoods’ work, the Justice Department dropped its case against Schock in return for his payment of $110,000 in taxes and restitution.