Gibson Dunn hires regulatory quartet from Herbert Smith Freehills in Hong Kong

Team is led by HSF's former Asia financial services regulatory head William Hallatt

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher has hired a team of regulatory lawyers from Herbert Smith Freehills in Hong Kong as the US firm seeks to bolster its financial services regulatory practice in the Asia region.

The quartet is led by partner William Hallatt and three associates – Emily Rumble, Becky Chung and Arnold Pun. Hallatt was previously head of Herbert Smith Freehills’ Asian financial services regulatory practice, and brings with him extensive experience in financial regulation across Asia Pacific.

Ken Doran, chairman and managing partner of Gibson Dunn, said: “Will is a terrific addition to the firm. He has built a leading cross-Asia practice as a trusted advisor on financial services regulatory issues, and his deep experience, strong relationships and market knowledge will integrate seamlessly with our global regulatory enforcement platform.”

Hallatt spent seven years as a partner at Herbert Smith Freehills, having joined in 2014 from Linklaters, where he spent more than a decade.

Kelly Austin, Gibson Dunn’s Hong Kong office head, said: “With Will’s regulatory investigations and advisory expertise, we will offer a market-leading, full-service financial services regulatory offering in the Asia-Pacific region that will closely link to our global platform in the US and Europe. The addition of this team further builds on the expansion of our litigation, investigations, and compliance practices in Asia over the last several years.”

Like Hallatt, Rumble joined Herbert Smith Freehills in 2014, initially working in Sydney before moving to Hong Kong in 2017. She was previously an associate to Judge Annabelle Bennett in the Federal Court of Australia. Her experience spans contentious and non-contentious regulatory issues, including anti-money laundering and market misconduct matters. 

Chung, meantime, joined Herbert Smith Freehills as an associate in 2018 from Linklaters, having previously worked in the enforcement division of Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission. She advises clients on a wide-range of regulatory and compliance issues impacting financial institutions in Hong Kong.

Pun joined Herbert Smith Freehills in 2018 from King & Wood Mallesons, where he spent just over four years. He advises on matters such as the mis-selling of investment products, IPO sponsor conduct and financial services licensing. 

In other Hong Kong news, Magic Circle firm Linklaters made a double partner hire in the city last month with the arrival of M&A lawyer Xiaoxi Lin from Kirkland & Ellis and leveraged finance expert Alessandro Nolet from White & Case. London-based firm RPC also hired partner Andrea Randall from leading Hong Kong independent Gall to set up a local employment practice in January.

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