Jones Day lawyers argued four cases before the U.S. Supreme Court in March

Thursday, May 12, 2016 - 13:27

Four lawyers from Jones Day argued four different cases before the U.S. Supreme Court during the week of March 21, 2016. The Firm has argued before the Court seven times this Term, including four that week.

On March 21, Issues & Appeals partner Mike Carvin argued Wittman v. Personhuballah, a case involving Congressional redistricting in Virginia in which the plaintiffs argued that the redistricting plan, as drawn by the state legislature in 2012, was the result of an unconstitutional "racial gerrymander." Carvin argued that the redistricting was not racial gerrymandering, but rather a legitimate redistricting with the aim of protecting incumbents. He also argued that the eight Virginia GOP incumbents had standing to press the appeal even though the State had not taken it up.

Also on March 21, Issues & Appeals partner Greg Katsas argued RJR Nabisco v. European Community, a case brought by the European Community and 26 of its member states, which alleged that RJR Nabisco and several other entities violated the federal RICO statute by engaging in racketeering activity that resulted in lost tax revenue, increased law enforcement costs, and lost profits in Europe. Katsas argued that the RICO statute does not apply to enterprises or injuries outside the United States.

On March 22, Government Regulation partner Chris Vergonis arguedSimmons v. Himmelreich, a case involving the intersection of the FTCA and the Bivens remedy. The client, whom Vergonis represents on a pro bono basis, is a federal inmate who was assaulted by a fellow inmate. The client sued the U.S. government for negligence and also sued the prison officials in their personal capacities for violations of the cruel and unusual punishment provisions of the Eighth Amendment. Vergonis argued that dismissal of a claim against the U.S. for falling within a statutory exception to the FTCA does not preclude a Bivens action under the FTCA's "judgment bar". 

On March 23, Noel Francisco, partner and leader of the Firm's Government Regulation Practice, argued Zubick v. Burwell, a consolidated case involving Catholic organizations that are challenging the contraceptive mandate. The mandate requires these organizations to facilitate, through their employee health plans, products and services that they oppose on religious grounds. Francisco argued that the contraceptive mandate violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.