Appeal court says Lafayette officials abused authority in expropriating land for detention ponds
Ray Brandt's widow will lose control of auto sales empire under judge's order
Randall A. Smith is a veteran trial lawyer and the founder and managing partner of Smith & Fawer, LLC, a boutique litigation firm, which focuses on providing excellent trial counsel for both plaintiffs and defendants in complex cases. Mr. Smith’s litigation experience is broad, with a special emphasis on business and commercial litigation, takings/eminent domain litigation, and white collar criminal defense. Having obtained many successful judgments and successfully defended against many claims and prosecutions, Mr. Smith has earned his reputation as an assertive, creative, and focused trial counsel.
Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, Stephen Gelé is committed to the culture and institutions of Southeast Louisiana. He grew up in the Gelé family's generational hunting and fishing store, earned a degree in Political Science from Loyola University, and then a law degree at Loyola School of Law.
A native of Islington, Massachusetts, Geoffrey is a seasoned litigator, who practices mainly in the areas of complex commercial litigation, community property litigation, as well as succession litigation, environmental litigation, and maritime litigation. Geoffrey graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst in 1988, having spent a full year at the University of Queensland, Australia. After graduating from university, Geoffrey worked for the Honorable Elihu Harris, former mayor of Oakland, California. Geoffrey also worked with the advertising firm of Foote, Cone & Belding in San Francisco, California. He attended Tulane University Law School, where he graduated cum laude with a Certificate in Environmental Law and was the recipient of the Cullen R. Liskow Award for excellence in Oil & Gas Law. Geoffrey practiced in New Orleans for three years and then moved his practice to Washington, D.C. before returning to his adopted home of New Orleans to re-establish his practice as a maritime and oil and gas litigator. Geoffrey joined Smith & Fawer in August 2006, where he has successfully represented closely-held and larger companies, individuals, insurance companies and maritime related entities in a variety of litigation matters. He has first chaired multiple bench and jury trials in both federal and state courts, as well as in arbitration, obtaining several multi-million-dollar judgments for Smith & Fawer clients. In his spare time, Geoffrey enjoys playing and coaching rugby.
Mike Fawer is Bronx born but a longtime New Orleans criminal defense attorney. He is a graduate of Cornell University and Columbia Law School. His career has spanned a 60 year period, trying cases in New York, Washington, D.C., Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Nevada and of course Louisiana. He has probably tried more high profile criminal cases than any other Louisiana attorney: murder cases (Aaron Mintz, William Johnson, Curtis Kyles), political corruption cases (Edwin Edwards, Charles Roemer, Chief Judge Walter Nixon), blatant government misconduct (Douglas DiLosa, Curtis Kyles, David Mark), and unique cases including attempted murder by injection of the HIV virus (Dr. Richard Schmidt of Lafayette). He has argued over 25 cases at the appellate level, securing reversals of conviction in at least half and has argued before the Supreme Court of the United States.