“I think it’s outrageous, irresponsible and insulting”
A bewildered third-year associate at global mega-firm Kirkland & Ellis has discovered life as a corporate lawyer isn’t all long lunches and freebies.
According to US media reports, poor Aulden Burcher-DuPont (pictured below) — a litigation specialist at Kirkland’s New York office — felt the wrath of a federal judge this week, because the firm had sent him and not a partner to an important conference.
Judge Nicholas Garaufis was less than impressed the elite MoneyLaw firm, which pays its London NQs a staggering £124,000 a year, sent rookie Burcher-DuPont to defend its client, Facebook, against very serious lawsuits reportedly filed by more than 20,000 claimants.
It’s no doubt an important case — one which involves accusations the social networking giant connected terrorists — so when junior lawyer Burcher-DuPont rocked up to a status conference, Judge Garaufis couldn’t help but make his feelings known.
He is reported to have told a presumably trembling Burcher-DuPont he thinks it’s “outrageous, irresponsible and insulting” the firm “didn’t send a partner here to talk about this kind of problem which implicates international terrorism and the murder of innocent people in Israel and other places”.
The enraged judge continued:
I’ve been a lawyer for 41 years and a judge for 16 years and I’m not having this discussion with you.
When former Mayer Brown lawyer Burcher-DuPont stepped in to tell Garaufis the top lawyers on the case had been called out to Texas the day before, the red-eyed judge responded:
Maybe Kirkland & Ellis can scrounge up a partner who isn’t busy in Texas to come see a lowly judge in the Eastern District of New York.
Ouch, ouch and ouch.
Parties have been told to return to court later this week. We hope for poor Burcher-DuPont’s sake he will not be in attendance.