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Report: Ashcroft Firm in Big Money Deal

November 20th, 2007 by mopns · No Comments

Report: Ashcroft Law Firm to Collect Over $52M to Help Monitor Knee Replacement Manufacturers

NEW YORK (Associated Press) – Former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft’s law firm could earn $52.2 million helping the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Jersey monitor a leading maker of knee and hip replacements, according to recent public filings.

Ashcroft’s firm is among five legal teams U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie hand-picked to watch the manufacturers, who agreed in September to pay $311 million and hire monitors to settle allegations they paid surgeons to use and promote their devices.

Christie, who took office in January 2002 and worked under Ashcroft until Ashcroft stepped down in 2005, denied any conflict Tuesday.

“If he were still my boss or potentially my boss in the future, I guess that would be something to talk about, but you know I just don’t see it as an issue,” Christie said. “I hired him because I know he’s somebody of honesty and integrity and who has the experience to be able to do a job like this.”

The arrangement, disclosed in Oct. 31 filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, was first reported Tuesday by The Star-Ledger of Newark.

The deal calls for Zimmer Holdings of Indiana to pay Washington-based Ashcroft Group Consulting Services an average monthly fee between $1.5 million and $2.9 million. That includes a flat payment of $750,000 to the firm’s “senior leadership group,” individual legal and consulting services at up to $895 an hour and as much as $250,000 in monthly expenses.

Ashcroft’s firm could make the full $52.2 million, but it will earn less if Zimmer complies with the agreement, Christie said. Read more…

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