Mr. Spencer has prosecuted a broad range of cases at Milberg LLP, with an emphasis on representing plaintiffs in class and other representative actions involving complex financial issues.
He was one of the principal trial counsel for plaintiffs in In re Vivendi Universal, S.A. Securities Litigation (S.D.N.Y.), a securities fraud class action in which the jury returned a verdict for the plaintiffs in January 2010. He is presently handling post-trial motions and defendant's anticipated appeal. The case is notable for the size of the verdict and for inclusion of investors from France, England, and the Netherlands, as well as the United States, in the certified class.
Mr. Spencer has handled many other securities cases at the Firm, including those against defendants in the fields of technology, real estate, finance, leasing, manufacturing, and pharmaceuticals. His first exposure to this type of case was in the precedent-setting "WPPSS" litigation in the late 1980s, which involved bond defaults on nuclear power plants in the Pacific northwest and established the blueprint for prosecuting many complex securities class actions that followed.
Mr. Spencer has also led the Firm's prosecution of other cases in diverse fields. He was one of two principal trial counsel representing the FDIC in its year-long trial against a major accounting firm involving failed-bank audits, which led to a global settlement covering all government claims just before closing arguments to the jury. He has prosecuted consumer and securities claims against companies that sold deferred annuities unsuitable for retirement plan investors. He has taken appraisal and breach of fiduciary duty cases to trial in Delaware and Pennsylvania. He had extensive involvement in representing a coalition of union health care funds seeking to recover costs for treating smoking-related illnesses from the tobacco industry, pursuing the cases through several appeals. He has also represented plaintiffs in cases involving accounting malpractice, limited partnership investments, real estate closing fees and mortgage insurance, contract disputes, defamation, unlawful lotteries, and consumer deception.
Mr. Spencer began his legal career as a law clerk to U.S. District Judge Wm. Matthew Byrne Jr. in Los Angeles (1976-77). He then returned to New York and joined Cravath, Swaine & Moore as an associate, where he worked until 1986, when he joined Milberg as an associate and became a partner later that year.