Markus & Markus is
a nationally recognized trial and appellate boutique law firm that is
known for taking on very difficult cases and winning. The named
partners of the firm -- David Oscar Markus and Mona E. Markus-- are honors graduates of Harvard Law School.
his career, David Markus has zealously and successfully represented
defendants in high-stakes litigation at the trial level all the way to
the Supreme Court. He
takes part in all of the Firm's cases, which typically
includes executives and professionals charged with white collar offenses
such as criminal antitrust, tax fraud, OFAC, mortgage fraud, medicare
fraud, RICO, and securities fraud. His contact information is on the
speed dial of businessmen (and even filmmakers).
Mona Markus was part of the trial and appellate team that obtained a
billion dollar verdict against Exxon in federal court and made it stick
before the United States Supreme Court. Mona leads the Firm's motion
and appellate practice, which in 2012 alone won three cases in the
11th Circuit Court of Appeals.
In addition to David and Mona, the Firm is lucky to have Margot Moss and Robin Kaplan-- two highly skilled and experienced lawyers who have achieved enormous success for their clients.
has tried more than 100 cases to verdict and while at the public
defender's office was tasked with training young lawyers. Her latest
trial resulted in a not guilty across the board before Judge Adalberto
Jordan in federal court. She handles complex criminal matters in state
and federal court.
has tried some of the largest cases in the Southern District of
Florida, including the case discussed above with David in which they
obtained a not guilty verdict on 141 counts. She recently obtained
not-guilty verdicts for a lawyer charged with mortgage fraud in federal
Firm handles a very small number of cases at any given time so that it
can dedicate its full energy to each and every case it takes.
Highlights of the Firm's founder -- David Oscar Markus:
Magna cum laude from Harvard Law School
Top 40 litigator under 40 years old (National Law Journal)
Lawyer, White Collar Criminal Defense and non-White Collar Criminal
Defense, Best Lawyers in America by U.S. News (2007-present)
President, Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (Miami) 2006-07
President, Federal Bar Association (Miami Chapter) 2007-08
Top Law Firm (South Florida Legal Guide), 2006-present
Top Miami Criminal Lawyer (South Florida Legal Guide), 2002-present
SuperLawyer (Florida SuperLawyers), 2006-present; Top 100 SuperLawyer in Florida 2010-Present (and in Miami).
Best Lawyers 2011-present
South Florida Business Journal Key Partners Award 2011
Instructor at the first White Collar Criminal Defense College at Stetson Law 2012
AV Rated (Martindale Hubbell)
Top Lawyer (Chambers & Partners), 2007-present
Finalist (one of only eight), Best White Collar Attorney in the United States 2010 and 2011 (Chambers & Partners)
According to the
2011 Chambers & Partners, "David Markus comes highly recommended
for his criminal defense work. Clients describe him as 'a charming man
of genius intellect, who throws himself into his work to achieve the
best results for his clients.'" The 2010 Chambers & Partners had this to say: "David Markus ... is 'the whole package,' according to market sources. 'A creative, courageous and tenacious courtoom advocate.' Peers cite as evidence of this the "stunning acquittal" he
achieved in the Dr. Ali Shaygan case, which resulted in the dismissal
of all 141 counts against his client and a court order to refund
$600,000 in costs due to government misconduct."
The 2012 Chambers recognized both David Markus and the Firm Markus & Markus for its outstanding work, saying this: "This
compact firm enters the rankings this year having been highly
recommended for its extensive expertise in white-collar criminal
defense. It has doubled in size in the past year and now houses four
lawyers, who handle extremely complex high-stakes criminal and
white-collar litigation with ease. David Markus received strong praise from peers and clients alike, who describe him as "a legal genius and brilliant strategist with a great demeanor." He is regarded as a criminal defense expert and has handled some high-profile matters."
After a recent trial with reggae star Buju Banton, one newspaper compared him to Clarence Darrow and Johnnie Cochran.
below is a small sample of the firm's cases. These summaries are
provided for informational purposes only and not as any promise as to
the outcome of your case. The facts and circumstances of your case may
differ from the matters listed here. The results of all cases handled
by the firm are not provided and these cases are not necessarily
representative of all results obtained by the firm or of the experience
of all clients or others with the firm. Every case is different, and
each client's case must be evaluated and handled on its own merits. By
viewing this page, you acknowledge that you have read and understand the
above disclaimer and that you would like to view the information set
United States v. Rodrigo Hidalgo.
In a total victory for our client, David Oscar Markus along with Mona
Markus and Robin Kaplan successfully obtained the dismissal of two
indictments against the Vice President of an airline. The charges
involved allegations of federal criminal antitrust laws violations by
conspiring to fix fuel surcharge prices on air cargo shipments to and
from the U.S. The team obtained a dismissal of the first indictment
after demonstrating their client's lack of particiption in the
conspiratorial meeting. With regard to the second indictment, the team
filed a unique motion demonstrating that the VP was simultaneously an
employee of another airline which meant that he was covered under the
grant of immunity in that airline's plea agreement. The DOJ fought hard
against the motion, filing 9 pleadings in opposition and calling
multiple witnesses to testify in support of their position. After a two
day evidentiary hearing, the Magistrate Judge wrote a 49-page order
granting the motion to dismiss, and the District Court affirmed.
United States v. Dr. Ali Shaygan. One
of the Firm's signature cases, David Oscar Markus led the defense team
to another first of its kind victory -- not guilty verdicts across the
board on 141 counts against a doctor charged in federal court with
selling pain medications. After a month long trial, the jury acquitted
on all counts in less than a half a day, and after they announced the
verdict, the jury hugged the lawyers and client. (Here's the Sun-Sentinel article and the Herald article).
In addition to the acquittal, Markus uncovered prosecutorial misconduct
and the federal judge heard two days of testimony from prosecutors and
agents, after which the court ordered the government to pay Dr. Shaygan
and his lawyers over $600,000. (Here's the AP article). The
Eleventh Circuit reversed the fee award, with several dissenting
opinions. We are currently seeking certiorari review in the U.S. Supreme
Court, as discussed in this National Law Journal article.
Second chairing Markus at trial was Robin Kaplan, an associate at the
firm, and Marc Seitles. Since this case, the Firm is regularly consulted
on cases involving doctors and pharmacists charged with cases involving
pain medication. Both state authorities and the federal government
have cast way too wide a net in the prosecution of doctors and
pharmacists who are engaged in legitimate medical practice, and the Firm
takes great pride in defending these cases.
United States v. Yuby Ramirez.
David Markus fought this case for 8 years, and Robin Kaplan joined the
case when she started at the firm. Yuby was sentenced to life and lost
her appeal. That's when Markus came into the case to represent her on
her habeas petition. After 4 appeals and numerous evidentiary hearings,
Markus was successful in obtaining her release from federal prison.
Her life sentence was vacated. There was a lot of media coverage
regarding the case, some of which is detailed here and here. This case demonstrates the never-give-up philosophy of the firm, which fought and fought and fought until Yuby was released.
Manuel Soltero v. Swire Development Sales, et al.
David Oscar Markus was brought in on the eve of trial to represent one
of the defendants in this federal civil RICO and fraud case. David
successfully defended the RICO count against his client, obtaining a
verdict of no liability. Although the jury returned a verdict for the
plaintiff on the fraud count, David and his co-counsel persuaded the
district judge to enter judgment as a matter of law for the defendants
and to dismiss the case. David and Mona Markus handled the appeal in the
Eleventh Circuit, which resulted in a quick unanimous opinion upholding
the dismissal, and a total victory for the client.
United States v. Michael Samuda.
Robin Kaplan was the lead attorney in this federal mortgage fraud
trial. Our client was a title attorney accused of creating double HUDs
to obtain more money than was needed from lenders. The government
charged at least 8 individuals in three separate indictments. All of the
attorney's codefendants and two of his employees cooperated with the
government and testified against him. After a two week trial, the jury
found him not guilty on four wire fraud counts and hung on the remaining
three counts. Ms. Kaplan successfully persuaded the government to
dismiss the remaining counts after trial.
State v. Rene Pedrayes. This
case involved allegations that Wackenhut executives were involved in a
scheme to overbill the county on the Metrorail contract. The charges
included over 800 RICO acts. Shortly after David Markus and Margot Moss
filed this motion, the case was dismissed. Here's the Herald article
discussing the dismissal and below is a picture of David and Margot
taken by the Daily Business Review for its Most Effective Lawyers
banquet, where they were honored for their work on this case.
United States v. Francesco Scaglia.
This federal criminal antitrust trial involved over a million documents
and numerous cooperating witnesses from around the world. Although the
trial took 4 weeks, the jury found Mr. Scaglia not guilty in less than 2
hours. Below is a picture of David and the winning trial team after the
not guilty verdict.
United States v. Edwin Rivera.
This case involved 288 counts of RICO, Medicaid fraud, mail and wire
fraud, and over 500 boxes of discovery. The trial of these 10 defendants
lasted 6 weeks. Mr. Markus' client was found not guilty on all counts.
This was the largest prosecution ever in the Southern District of
State of Florida v. Gale Fontaine. In
the first case of its kind to proceed to trial in the State of Florida,
Mr. Markus obtained a not guilty verdict in the trial of a business
woman, Gale Fontaine, who had been charged with running a gambling
house. The State had charged Ms. Fontaine and a number of other
operators of "senior arcades", places where senior citizens could play
machines for low stakes (8 cents). The other operators cut deals, but
Mr. Markus obtained the first not guilty verdict in this area after a
one week trial that was vigorously prosecuted by the State of Florida
and covered daily by the local media. Here is the article covering the
verdict, which was on the front page of the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel,
and here is a segment from NPR interviewing Mr. Markus about the case.
Since this case, Markus has been the go-to lawyer for advice on how to
legally operate arcades in Florida. Below is the picture from the
Sentinel which was prominently placed above the fold on the front page.