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Chanakya A. Sethi

Associate

Chanakya Sethi is an Associate at Wilkinson Stekloff. He has represented corporate and individual clients in a broad range of matters, including federal criminal cases, antitrust and consumer class actions, intellectual property disputes, and government investigations. Since joining the firm in 2018, Chan has been a member of a team that tried a fourth-month criminal jury trial and teams that achieved favorable resolutions on the eve of trial in two multibillion-dollar antitrust class actions.

Chan grew up in Toronto and graduated from Princeton University in 2007, where he was editor-in-chief of The Daily Princetonian. He has law degrees from Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto, where he graduated first in his class, and Yale Law School. Chan clerked for Justice Michael J. Moldaver of the Supreme Court of Canada and Judge Ronnie Abrams of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. He also spent a summer during law school interning with Justice Dalveer Bhandari of the Supreme Court of India. Before law school, Chan worked for two years in the legal department of a leading global investment bank.

Chan focuses his pro bono work on appeals, particularly in criminal cases. In recent years, he has represented the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the National Association of Federal Defenders, and FAMM before the U.S. Supreme Court, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and Amnesty International before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Before joining the firm, Chan practiced at Williams & Connolly LLP.


Education

  • Undergraduate: Princeton University, A.B. (2007)
    Editor-in-Chief, The Daily Princetonian
  • Law: Osgoode Hall Law School, J.D., with the Gold Medal (2012)
    Executive Editor, Osgoode Hall Law Journal
    First Place Oralist, Laskin Moot Court

    Yale Law School, LL.M. (2014)
    Editor, Yale Law & Policy Review

Clerkship

  • Justice Michael J. Moldaver, Supreme Court of Canada (2012–13)
  • Judge Ronnie Abrams, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (2014–15)

Notable Matters

  • Representing the lead defendant in a nationally-reported federal criminal trial about an opioid pain medicine. After a four-month jury trial, the district court rejected the government’s principal charges and demand for over $300 million in financial penalties. Further proceedings are pending.
  • Represented Forest Laboratories in In re Namenda Direct Purchaser Antitrust Litigation, a certified antitrust class action in the Southern District of New York involving a groundbreaking treatment for dementia in Alzheimer’s patients. Plaintiffs claimed that Forest made an anticompetitive “reverse payment” to settle a generic drug manufacturer’s challenge to Namenda, and that Forest unlawfully tried to effectuate a “hard switch” between a twice-daily and once-daily version of Namenda. Plaintiffs claimed approximately $21 billion in trebled damages; the case settled the night before trial for less than 5% of that amount.
  • Prior to joining the firm, represented consumer product companies in multiple putative consumer class actions in California involving international supply chain issues. The Ninth Circuit affirmed the district courts’ orders dismissing the cases prior to discovery and denied certification of state law questions to the Supreme Court of California.
  • Prior to joining the firm, represented a European medical device manufacturer in a patent licensing dispute governed by Swedish law. The matter was successfully tried before an arbitration panel in Stockholm.
  • Prior to joining the firm, represented major record company plaintiffs in a copyright infringement action against a novel music streaming and downloading service. Secured a temporary restraining order and defendant’s consent to a permanent injunction and judgment.

Other Activities

Chan is a trustee of The Daily Princetonian, the independent student newspaper of Princeton University, and a director of the Princeton University Summer Journalism Program, which brings 40 students from low-income backgrounds to Princeton’s campus for an intensive 10-day seminar on journalism and college preparation.

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