Michael P. Robotti

Partner
New York

A former Assistant United States Attorney, Mike Robotti uses his strong prosecutorial background to handle internal and government investigations, white collar defense and complex litigation. Mike counsels corporations and individuals across a range of industries against allegations of misconduct, including money laundering, securities fraud, public corruption, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) violations and other financial crimes. Mike also advises financial institutions and businesses on their anti-money laundering obligations under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), as well as other compliance requirements, with a particular focus on issues involving cannabis, cryptocurrency and anti-corruption.  Additionally, Mike assists businesses presently seeking to enter New York’s cannabis market with preparing their compliance plans and licensing applications. Mike has authored several recent articles on this topic.

As a member of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York for nearly eight years, Mike served as deputy chief of the International Narcotics & Money Laundering section and as senior trial counsel for the Business and Securities Fraud section. Mike was a member of the trial team that prosecuted Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera—the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, the world’s largest drug cartel. For his work on that case, in 2019, he received the Attorney General’s David Margolis Award for Exceptional Service, the Department of Justice’s highest honor. He also led the investigation and prosecution of Genaro García Luna, a former Mexican cabinet official, who allegedly protected the Sinaloa Cartel in exchange for bribes.

Experience 

Representative Matters

  • United States v. Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman Loera: Prosecutor on three-month federal trial of drug kingpin and leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, the world’s largest drug cartel, who was convicted of engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise, multiple drug conspiracy offenses, firearms offenses, and money laundering.
  • Corporate Compliance Investigations: Lead prosecutor on investigations into several large corporations for their alleged failure to maintain adequate corporate compliance programs, including the failure to maintain an adequate anti-money laundering program under the BSA and the failure to maintain an adequate anti-diversion program under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).
  • United States v. Rivera, et al. Prosecutor on three-month federal trial that led to the conviction of the two leaders of a Brooklyn-based gang known as TF Mafia for racketeering, involving predicate acts of murder, sex trafficking, sex trafficking of children, interstate prostitution, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, witness tampering, and firearms charges, among other substantive charges.

Professional Highlights

Pro Bono Experience

Mike devotes his pro bono practice to LGBT issues and advocacy.

Judicial Clerkships

Hon. Reena Raggi, U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, September 2012 – September 2013

Hon. Allyne R. Ross, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, October 2010 - September 2011

Professional Activities

LGBT Bar Association of New York, Member

The National LGBTQ+ Bar Association, Member

Federal Bar Council, Member

New York City Bar Association, Member

Recognition & Accomplishments

Attorney General’s David Margolis Award for Exceptional Service, 2019 (DOJ’s highest honor)

Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force Director’s Award, 2020

Federal Law Enforcement Foundation Award, 2019

True American Hero Award, 2019

Executive Office of the United States Attorneys Director’s Award for Superior Performance, 2018

Speaking Engagements

Guest Lecturer, "United States v. Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman Loera," New York University School of Law

Publications

Co-author, “Smoke & Mirrors: The New York Cannabis Law’s Illusory Lease Mandate,” Business Crimes Bulletin, November 2021

Co-author, “Joint Defense: The Need for Prospective New York Cannabis Companies to Implement Strong Compliance Programs Now,” New York Law Journal, October 2021

Co-author, “Joint Defense: Steps Cannabis Companies Can Take Now to Protect Themselves against Criminal Enforcement Actions in the New York Cannabis Market,” New York Law Journal, October 2021

Credentials 

Education

New York University School of Law (J.D., magna cum laude, 2008)
Order of the Coif
Florence Allen Scholar

Boston College (B.A., summa cum laude, 2004)
Arts & Sciences Honors Program
Political Science Honors Program
Highest Distinction in Major

Admissions

New York

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York