Michael Dreeben is a partner at O’Melveny and Myers LLP and serves as Co-Chair of the White Collar Defense and Corporate Investigations Practice. He is also a member of O’Melveny’s Supreme Court and Appellate Litigation Group. He served in the US Department of Justice’s Office of the Solicitor General for more than 30 years, including 24 years as the Deputy Solicitor General in charge of the government’s criminal docket in the Supreme Court.
Michael has argued 105 cases in the Supreme Court on behalf of the United States. He has briefed hundreds more. These cases span the full range of substantive criminal law and procedure, including landmark cases on public corruption, private fraud, Fourth Amendment privacy, criminal sentencing, the Confrontation Clause, the right to counsel, and the First Amendment. The civil matters include the separation of powers, federal securities law, RICO, and labor law. In addition, Michael has argued cases in every regional federal court of appeals, including ten cases before en banc courts, and has argued appeals in the Montana Supreme Court, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. He has received the Department of Justice’s John Marshall Award for the handling of appeals and has twice received the Department’s Distinguished Service Award. He has also received the Rex Lee Advocacy Award and the Tom Clark Award for Outstanding Government Lawyer.
In 2017, Michael served as Counselor to Special Counsel Robert Mueller, III, in the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and obstruction of justice. He led the team responsible for giving legal and strategic advice to the Special Counsel and all prosecution teams. He also had a leading role in defending the statutory and constitutional authority of the Special Counsel in district court and on appeal.
Michael’s practice at O’Melveny embraces multiple areas of law, including Supreme Court and appellate advocacy, white-collar defense, cybersecurity, and data Privacy. He also provides strategic advice to clients, especially those facing government investigations and complex issues of first impression.
After graduating from the University of Wisconsin and earning a Master’s degree at the University of Chicago in history, he received his J.D. degree from the Duke University School of Law, where he served as Article Editor on the Duke Law Journal. He clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit for Judge Jerre S. Williams. Currently, Michael serves as a Distinguished Visiting Professor from Government at Georgetown University Law Center. He has previously served as an adjunct professor at Georgetown Law and a visiting professor at Duke Law School, where he taught appellate advocacy and a seminar on constitutional litigation in the Supreme Court. Recently, he taught a seminar at the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. He is a member of the American Law Institute.
- Michael R. Dreeben, The Right to Present a Twinkie Defense, 9 Green Bag 2d 353 (Summer 2006).
- Michael R. Dreeben, The Confrontation Clause, the Law of Unintended Consequences, and the Structure of Sixth Amendment Analysis, 34 Geo. L.J. Ann. Rev. Crim. Pro. iii (2005).
- Michael R. Dreeben, Insider Trading and Intangible Rights: The Redefinition of the Mail Fraud Statute, 26 Am. Crim. L. Rev. 181 (1988).