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William J. Schilling at a deposition of Jones Day attorneys in a lawsuit involving the Keating savings and loan.

In Whose Best Interests?

Mark J. Saladino was on the spot. Under professional ethics rules, the young attorney was required to maintain the confidences of his law firm’s clients. However, a coworker — a secretary to a powerful partner in his office — had come to him seeking advice. Should she invest in the bonds being offered for sale by the bank downstairs, in the lobby of their Los Angeles office building? Jones Day’s Mark Saladino (left) and plaintiffs’ lawyer, Grannan. The time was late 1988, just as the financial follies of the decade were beginning to unravel. Saladino and his co-worker are bit players in one of the era’s grander confidence schemes. Much has been written about the personalities that perpetuated the megafrauds of the era, yet little attention has been given to the role of their lawyers. Some lawsuits were filed and settled — including two against Saladino’s law firm that netted $75 million for investors and the government. Despite the settlements, lawyers who agreed to pay also made public rationalizations for their conduct. These claims were

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