Phone: 818-827-9000
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Larry W. Gabriel

Of Counsel

Larry W. Gabriel

818-827-9147

818-827-9099

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Larry specializes in bankruptcy litigation with emphasis on the prosecution of directors and officers and professional malpractice claims and on commercial litigation matters. A member of the California Bar since 1975, he has been at the forefront of many of the leading bankruptcy litigation cases over the past several years, including representing the Trustees before the Ninth Circuit in: In the Matter of Estate Financial, Inc., Jeremiassen v. Bryan Cave, U.S. Court of Appeal Case No. 12-56009 (decided March 24, 2014); In the Matter of Fitness Holdings International, Inc., Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of the Estate of Fitness Holdings International, Inc. v. Hancock Park Capital II, L.P., Pacific Western Bank, et. al., 714 F.3d 1141 (9th Cir. 2013); and In re First Alliance Mortgage, Inc., Henry v. Lehman Commercial Paper, Inc. 471 F.3d 977 (9th Cir. 2006). Over the span of his career, Larry has represented State Street Bank and Trust, Xerox Corporation, Bank of America, Imperial Bank, AARP and the State of Alaska.

Representative Matters

Education

  • Successfully represented Estate Financial Inc.’s chapter 11 trustee, Thomas P. Jeremiassen, in an appeal to the 9th Circuit, which reversed the District Court’s dismissal of a $100 million lawsuit against the international law firm Bryan Cave, LLP.
  • Successfully represented the Chapter 7 Trustee of the Estate of Fitness Holdings, Inc., in an appeal to the 9th Circuit, obtaining an order clarifying 9th Circuit law that bankruptcy courts have the authority to “recharcterize” debt to equity in addressing constructive fraudulent transfer claims brought under 11 U.S.C. § 548(a)(1)(B).  (In the Matter of Fitness Holdings International, Inc., Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of the Estate of Fitness Holdings International, Inc. v. Hancock Park Capital II, L.P., Pacific Western Bank, et. al., United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, No. 11-56677, April 30, 2013) (2013 WL 1800000 (C.A.9 (Cal.)).

  • Special litigation counsel to Trustee In re Mary Perkins (a $30 million mortgage fraud investment scheme).
  • Special litigation counsel to Trustee In re Estate Financial Inc., prosecuting claims with damages in excess of $88 million.
  • Lead Class Counsel to In re Quality Home Loans (a $60 million mortgage investment scheme) in claims against the company’s officers and directors
  • Represented the Official Borrowers Committee in the First Alliance Mortgage bankruptcy, and represented the Liquidating Trustee in a $400 million equitable subordination claim based upon “aiding and abetting” a mortgage fraud program against Lehman Brothers, Inc., Henry v. Lehman Commercial Paper, Inc. 471 F.3d 977 (9th Cir. 2006).
  • Recovered $2 million on behalf of The Examiner from former officers and directors in the In re CenterStaging Musical Productions, Inc.) bankruptcy.
  • Represented the receiver in In re Norman David Stark/JPS Corporation, [131 Cal. App. 4th 184 (2005), cert denied Case No. S136969, Oct 19, 2005)], the first reported case involving the use of a receiver by a state agency involving a criminal business enterprise.
  • Represented Pension Plan Sponsors and Trustees ($1,000,000,000 in contract claims) in the Executive Life Insurance Conservation proceedings.
  • Represented State Street Bank in a suit against Mutual of New York for breach of contract and ERISA violations.  The matter, tried before a jury, settled after completion of the trial on terms favorable to State Street.
  • Represented Pension Plan Sponsors and Trustees in the Mutual Benefit Life Insurance Company Conservation proceedings.  Participated on the steering committee of “Pension GIC” contract holders.
  • Represented the American Bar Association’s Pension Plan in objecting to the demutualization of Equitable Life.
  • Defended Travelers Insurance Company in a $50 million lender liability claim brought by defendants in response to a foreclosure action instituted by Travelers.  The matter was tried before a jury and settled on appeal.
  • Represented CCB in breach of contract claim against LCB.  Claim arose out of the failure of LCB to complete the acquisition of CCB.  Judgment for CCB in excess of $5,000,000 plus award of attorneys fees.
  • Represented president of failed bank in directors/officers litigation against former bank president, United States District Court, Central Dist. of California
  • Defended Imperial Bank against $10,000,000 claim by F.D.I.C.  Complaint alleged Bank was negligent in handling wire transfers causing the closure of a South Dakota bank.
  • Prosecuted $23 million bank fraud action arising out of a “check kiting” scheme.  The Bank sustained no loss as a result of the recoveries made from the litigation.
  • Southern Illinois University, B.A., 1970
  • De Paul University, J.D., 1974

Admissions, Memberships and Qualifications

Publications & Presentations

  • California State Bar
  • Illinois State Bar
  • U.S. District Court
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
  • 5th, 7th, and 9th Circuits Courts of Appeal
  • United States Supreme Court
  • Adjunct Professor (Business Law), College of the Desert (2005-2007)
  • Member, City Council, City of Hidden Hills, California (1997-2002).  Mayor Pro Tem (1998-2002)
  • Representative, Las Virgenes Council of Governments (2000-2002); Planning Commissioner – City of Hidden Hills (1991-1993)
  • Adjunct Professor of Law (Banking), Pepperdine University (1987-1989)
  • Judge Pro Tem, Beverly Hills Municipal Court (1982-1990)
  • Board of Directors, Calabasas Country Club (President, 2004-5)
  • Named a “Super Lawyer” by Southern California Super Lawyer Magazine (2016-2017), placing him in the top 5% of attorneys in the region.
  • Author, “Another Arrow In The Chapter 11 Trustee’s Quiver,” Law360, May 2014
  • Source, “9th Circ. Revives $100M Bryan Cave Legal Malpractice Suits,” Law360, March, 2014
  • Source, “Proskauer, Chadbourne Could Face Billions In Damages,” Law360, February, 2014
  • Source, “Detroit Judge’s Ch. 9 Ruling Will Fire Up Pension Dispute,” Law360, December, 2013
  • “The Impact of Recent Developments at Lloyd’s – Insolvencies, Limited Liability, Changes in Membership By-Laws, Credit Risk Associated with Lloyd’s Names on ‘Old Years’ Policies and Equitas, Lloyd’s American Trust Funds – From the Perspective of U.S. Policyholders,” American Bar Association International Insurance Law and Practice, May 5, 1995, London, England.
  • “Receivers’ ERISA Fiduciary Responsibilities — Fact or Fiction,” National Association of Insurance Commissioners (“NAIC”), The Society of Insurance Receivers Insolvency Workshop, February 6, 1995, Savannah, Georgia.
  • Speaker, “1994 Receivers and Guaranty Funds in Life Insurance Insolvency Proceedings: The Need For Reform.”
  • Speaker, “Solvency Concerns With Foreign Insurers and Reinsurers/Recent Developments/US Reform Efforts;” ABA National Institute
  • Author, “Ramifications of a Check Kite-Liability Between Banks,” Pacific Banker and Business, March 1983.
  • Author, “Check Kiting – The Implications of a Discovering Bank’s Actions on Its Right of Recovery,” Banking News, November 15, 1982.
  • Author, “Ramifications of a Check Kite – Liability Between Banks;” Reprinted Independent Banker, January, 1983