14 Feb 2023

Willkie Farr adds top Jan 6. attack investigator to lead compliance and investigations team

Timothy Heaphy joins in Washington DC alongside senior government investigator Soumya Dayanandajoin

Timothy Heaphy and Soumya Dayananda Images courtesy of WIllkie Farr & Gallagher

Willkie Farr & Gallagher has added the chief investigator to the US House committee investigating the 6 January, 2021 attack on the US Capitol to co-lead its compliance, investigations and enforcement practice. 

Timothy Heaphy has joined the practice in Washington DC alongside Soumya Dayananda, who served as a senior investigative counsel to the Jan. 6 committee. 

The duo effectively replace Martin J. Weinstein, the compliance group's former chair, and fellow partner Jeffrey Clark, who departed for Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft earlier this month. Weinstein, who will lead the equivalent practice at Cadwalader, told Law.com his departure was partly down to Willkie's retirement policy. 

They bring more than 40 years of combined public service experience to Willkie, where they are both partners, and have extensive experience in complex government investigations, compliance, crisis management and white-collar litigation.

“We are thrilled to welcome Tim and Soumya to our growing Washington DC office, which now includes over 130 lawyers focused on helping our clients navigate novel and complex litigation, regulatory and government enforcement matters,” said David Mortlock, managing partner of Willkie’s Washington DC office. “Tim and Soumya are respected senior government lawyers whose experience, including on Capitol Hill and in the Justice Department, will complement our global team of litigation and investigations attorneys.”

Heaphy had served as chief investigative counsel to the Jan. 6 committee since August 2021, where his duties included creating and implementing the investigative plan that guided its day-to-day work. He also conducted numerous depositions and helped craft the committee’s hearings and report.

Earlier in his career he spent many years as US attorney for the Western District of Virginia, where he led investigations and cases involving national security, financial and health care fraud, public corruption, money laundering and civil rights. He also chaired the white collar defence practice at Hunton & Williams and was a partner at McGuireWoods. 

Meantime Dayananda has spent the past 18 months leading a team of lawyers investigating the law enforcement and military response to the US Capitol attack. Before that she was a senior investigative counsel to the US Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and also served as an assistant US attorney in leadership positions in the International Narcotics and Money Laundering Section of the US Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of New York. 

William Stellmach, co-chair of Willkie’s compliance, investigations and enforcement practice, commented: “Our investigations and defense team advises clients on their most complicated, high stakes matters. Tim and Soumya’s additions will deepen our group with their decades of experience managing high-profile government investigations in congressional investigations, multi-agency enforcement and compliance matters.”

Stellmach was himself previously a senior government lawyer, having served as head of the US Department of Justice’s fraud section before joining Willkie in 2015.

 US rival King & Spalding bolstered its own government investigations bench in New York recently with the hire of Olivia Radin, managing partner of Freshfield Bruckhaus Deringer’s New York office. 

And last summer WilmerHale landed Preet Bharara, former US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, for its government investigations team.