Client Qwest used Boies-tied
By Laurie P. Cohen and Robert Frank of The Wall Street Journal
Thursday, September 1, 2005
Denver-based Qwest Communications International Inc. and Tyco International Ltd., major clients of the law firm of Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP, paid millions of dollars to a legal-document-management company that was partially owned by members of the family of star lawyer David Boies.
About half a dozen other Boies Schiller clients have used, or are using, the document-management company, Amici LLC, to store and manage legal documents since the company's founding in 2002.
One of Amici's founders was William F. Duker of Albany, N.Y. Duker, a lawyer and former associate of Boies, pleaded guilty to four felony counts and was sentenced to 33 months in prison in 1997 for falsely inflating legal bills to the federal government.
Adelphia Communications Corp., based in Greenwood Village, disclosed this week that Boies Schiller resigned as special counsel to the company at Adelphia's request after the cable company discovered business ties between Boies' family and Amici, which Adelphia also used. Boies in an interview said Tuesday he should have fully disclosed his children's ownership interest in Amici.
"I should have made certain that everyone knew about it," he said.
Boies also confirmed that members of his family indirectly own stakes in a document-copying company called Echelon Group LLC. Echelon is Boies Schiller's in-house copying service for its Manhattan and Armonk, N.Y., offices and had revenue of a little less than $1 million last year, Boies said.
He said Amici was only one of several companies that Boies Schiller recommended to Tyco and that Tyco made its own independent decision.
He added that Boies Schiller wasn't involved in Qwest's decision to retain Amici. Boies Schiller was counsel for both companies at the time they used Amici.
Spokesmen for Denver-based Qwest and Tyco, which operates out of West Windsor, N.J., declined to comment on their relationship with either the Boies Schiller firm or Amici.