George B. Donnini is a Shareholder practicing in Butzel's Troy office.
Mr. Donnini practices in the areas of white collar criminal defense, SEC civil enforcement actions, antitrust investigations, and also routinely conducts corporate internal investigations. Due to the expansive nature of fraud claims, he routinely counsels his clients through both criminal charges and civil liability and/or enforcement actions. Accordingly, Mr. Donnini must manage complex litigation involving multiple adversaries, multiple jurisdictions, and interrelated issues.
Mr. Donnini has experience in a broad array of criminal and civil cases, representing clients at both the trial and appellate levels in federal and state courts across the country. He has varied and significant experience representing clients in criminal cases involving allegations of healthcare fraud, securities, and tax fraud, theft of trade secrets, insider trading, public corruption, environmental and mortgage fraud. He also has conducted numerous internal investigations for both private and publicly traded companies. He aggressively, creatively, and successfully represents clients in a wide variety of federal and state criminal matters.
Before joining Butzel, Mr. Donnini served as a law clerk to The Honorable William H. Pauley III, United States District Court, S.D.N.Y., New York, New York (1998-1999). He also served as a Judge Advocate for the United States Marine Corps from 1999 to 2003. He was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps in 2003 after serving as counsel of record in numerous criminal trials.
Honorable William H. Pauley III, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
Mr. Donnini is admitted to practice in Michigan (2003), New York (1998) and California (2000). He is also admitted before all U.S. District Courts in Michigan, as well as numerous district and circuit courts across the country.
ABA, Criminal Justice Section, White Collar Crime Committee, Young Lawyers' Division; National Co-Chair
ABA, Criminal Justice Section, White Collar Crime Committee; Midwest Regional Co-Chair
ABA Criminal Justice Section, Book Board, Co-Chair
American Bar Association Sections of Litigation and Criminal Justice
Federal Bar Association
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
Michigan Lawyers Weekly 2016 "Leader in the Law"
Up and Coming Michigan Lawyers, Michigan Lawyers Weekly (December 8, 2008)
Chambers USA, White Collar Litigation, 2021-Present
The Best Lawyers in America, Lawyer of the Year, Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2023
The Best Lawyers in America, Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2021-2023
DBusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit, White-Collar Criminal Defense, 2011-2012, 2014, 2016-Present
Michigan Super Lawyers, Rising Star in Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2011-2012
Michigan Super Lawyers, Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2013-2022
The following matters are representative of his recent work:
Represented auto suppliers in major US and international antitrust investigations
Represent multiple employees/ executives/ officers in major US and international antitrust investigations
Conducted numerous internal investigations for public and private companies
Represented numerous individual and corporate defendants facing federal criminal prosecution arising from allegations of wire and mail fraud, tax fraud, insider trading, healthcare fraud, environmental crimes, theft of trade secrets and otherconspiracy allegations
Represented the CFO of a public company in a significant SEC enforcement action alleging 10b-5 and 17(a) violations in federal court in the Eastern District of Michigan
Represented a CFO of a non-profit hospital system in a joint DOJ and SEC investigation
Represented an attorney in connection with tax shelter investigation conducted by the DOJ Criminal Tax Division
Represented an attorney in criminal matter involving kickbacks on vendor contracts being funneled to corporate executives of public company
Routinely represent individuals and companies subject to SEC subpoenas and investigations concerning alleged violations of securities laws with respect to a wide variety of financial transactions
Represented executive of an environmental company charged with criminal violations of the Clean Water Act and related environmental statutes
Represented corporate manager in a significant criminal health care fraud case, which culminated in an acquittal of the firm's client, involving allegations of federal anti-kickback statute and Prescription Drug Marketing Act violations
Represented Director of Financial Accounting and Reporting of Tier I supplier in SEC Enforcement action alleging 10b-5, 13(b), 17(a) in federal court in the Eastern District of Michigan
Representative Speaking Engagements
Moderator, Aggressive Use of the Rules of Evidence to Gain Tactical Advantage: Views From the Government, the Bench, and the Defense, ABA National Institute on White-Collar Crime (2006).
Panelist, Daubert: The Challenge in 2008 and Beyond, Federal Bar Association/ABA White Collar Crime Committee, Midwest Region.
Panelist, Corporate Fraud Investigations: Financial Fraud in Small Companies, Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (May 13, 2009)
Panelist, Taking Aim at Kickbacks, Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (May 18, 2010)
Sentencing Advocacy For White Collar Defendants: Show Some Gall, December 21, 2007
Justice Department Approves New Guidelines For Charging Corporations With Crimes, August 30, 2008
Call The Question: Is Capitol Hill A Warrant Free Zone Post-Rayburn? (Published in ABA White Collar Crime Institute Publication (March, 2008)
Primary Practice Areas
All Related Practice Areas
- Aerospace and Defense
- Antitrust Investigations
- Business & Commercial Litigation
- Environment, Energy & Sustainability
- Environmental Criminal Investigations
- Environmental Litigation
- Government & Internal Investigations
- Grand Jury Investigations
- Internal Investigations
- Litigation and Dispute Resolution
- Professional Liability/Disciplinary Proceedings
- Public Corruption
- Regulatory Permitting & Compliance
- Securities Fraud
- Securities Litigation
- Stark, Fraud & Abuse
- Trade Secrets Theft
- White Collar Crime, Civil Defense, and Investigation
- White Collar Criminal Defense
Duke University Law School 1998, J.D.
George Washington University Undergraduate 1995, phi beta kappa, B.A.
- New York
- American Bar Association - Sections of Litigation and Criminal Justice
- ABA - Criminal Justice Section, White Collar Crime Committee, Young Lawyers' Division National Co-Chair (2006-2009)
- ABA - Criminal Justice Section, White Collar Crime Committee Midwest Regional Co-Chair (2005-2018)
- ABA - Criminal Justice Section, Book Board, Co-Chair 2022, Appointed Member (2008-Present)
- National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
- Federal Bar Association
Awards & Recognitions
Awards & Recognitions
Up and Coming Michigan Lawyers, Michigan Lawyers Weekly (December 8, 2008)
Chambers USA, White Collar Litigation, 2021-2022
The Best Lawyers in America, "Lawyer of the Year," Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2023
The Best Lawyers in America, Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2021-20223
DBusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit, Non-White-Collar Criminal Defense Professional Malpractice Law, 2011-2012; White-Collar Criminal Defense, 2011-2012, 2014, 2016-2023; Antitrust Law, 2021 & 2022, 2023
Michigan Super Lawyers, Rising Star in Criminal Defense: White Collar, 2011-2012
Michigan Super Lawyers, Criminal Defense: White Collar, 2013-2022
- Obtained a declination of prosecution for an accounting officer of an international automotive supplier after investigation by the DOJ and the SEC
- Represented CFO of a non-profit hospital for securities fraud; case settled no jail or fine, SEC restitution
- Represented a public company in an SEC investigation involving revenue recognition issues which, after significant document production and SEC depositions, culminated in a no action termination letter being issued by the SEC
- Represented executive of an environmental company charged with criminal violations of the Clean Water Act and related environmental statutes
- Represented witnesses in a variety of criminal and civil proceedings
- Represented a former employee accused of stealing more than $100 million worth of trade secrets from his employers in violation of the federal economic espionage act.
- Represented an attorney in criminal matter involving kickbacks on vendor contracts being funneled to corporate executive of company
- Represented numerous Tier I auto suppliers in federal Antitrust investigations
- SEC Enforcement Action: Corporate Representation Regarding Alleged GAAP Accounting Irregularities
- Represented a defense contractor accused of fraudulently supplying non-conforming materials to the Department of Defense.
- Health Care Fraud Federal Criminal Trial: Individual Defense
- Represented numerous individual and corporate defendants facing federal criminal prosecution arising from allegations of wire and mail fraud, tax fraud, insider trading, healthcare fraud, environmental crimes, theft of trade secrets and drug conspiracy
- Represented corporations and executives under federal investigation
- Represented auto supplier in major US and foreign antitrust investigation
- Represented a company in connection with a bribery investigation.
- Represented a book publisher and distributor in criminal investigation conducted by US Postal Service
- Represented a physician accused of illegally prescribing pain medication to individuals without a medical need.
- Represented multiple Corporations in federal antitrust investigation re highway contracts
- Represented a former Chief Financial Officer and Controller of several corporations accused in state court of embezzling almost $200,000.
- Represented a registered representative in a selling away action
- Represented a major automotive supplier under investigation for allegedly participating in a several hundred million dollar international antitrust price-fixing conspiracy.
- Represented individuals and companies subject to SEC subpoenas and investigations
- Represented a major law firm partner in connection with tax shelter investigation conducted by the DOJ Criminal Tax Division
- SEC Enforcement Actions: individual and corporate defendants facing federal criminal prosecution and SEC investigations
- Obtained acquittal of pharmaceutical company executive in federal trial in Boston following 4 month jury trial
- Represented Company in federal antitrust investigation re transportation industry
- Represented pharmaceutical company in Qui Tam case in Boston.
- Obtained a complete declination of all proceedings, criminal and civil health care fraud, against pharmaceutical client by the US Attorney's Office in Dallas
- Represented a witness involved in stock options back-dating investigation by the United States Attorneys’ Office for the Northern District of California
- Represented the CFO of a public company in a significant SEC enforcement action alleging 10b-5 and 17(a) violations in federal court in the Eastern District of Michigan
- Represented Corporation in federal antitrust civil class action re automotive products
- Ponzi Schemes: Representation of Broker Dealers/Investment Advisors
- Represented multiple Japanese Auto Supplier companies in criminal antitrust investigations conducted by the Department of Justice, Antitrust Division (Washington, DC)
- Routinely represent individuals and companies subject to SEC subpoenas and investigations concerning alleged violations of securities law with respect to a wide variety of financial transactions
- Represented multiple employees/ executives/ officers in major US and international antitrust investigations
- Represented Tier I auto supplier in parallel proceedings conducted by US Attorney’s Office
- Successfully represented officer of pharmaceutical company in largest health care fraud trial to date in U.S. District Court in Boston
- Represented metals trading company in major U.S. Attorney and U.S. Customs investigation
News & Events
- Firm News, 1.4.2023
- Firm News, 11.15.2022
- Firm News, 8.18.2022
- Firm News, 8.12.2022
- Firm News, 7.5.2022
- CNN, 6.10.2019
- DBusiness Magazine, 11.26.2018
- 10.26.2011Butzel Long attorney George B. Donnini discusses federal government's probe into price-fixing in the U.S. auto supply chain
Alerts & Publications
- Client Alert, 10.14.2022