Cheryl O'Connor is an accomplished, first-chair trial lawyer with 25 years of experience in high-stakes litigation, both civil and criminal. She represents companies and executives in government investigations and cases involving trade secret and economic espionage, unfair competition, False Claims Act, and consumer class actions. Cheryl is an equally skilled appellate advocate and has argued before the Ninth Circuit more than a dozen times. Prior to joining Jones Day, Cheryl served as a Assistant United States Attorney in the Central District of California, where she was the Deputy Chief of the Public Corruption and Civil Rights Section.
As a federal prosecutor, Cheryl directed law enforcement in grand jury and wiretap investigations, then prosecuted the resulting cases through trial and appeal. She was lead trial counsel on the largest human trafficking case brought in Southern California, for which she received the Attorney General's Award for Distinguished Service. Cheryl now advises companies on how to detect and eliminate the threat of human trafficking in their supply chain and services. She also helps companies conduct internal investigations, develop robust compliance programs, and defend against claims of fraud and abuse.
Cheryl is active in the legal and civic community. She serves as a Lawyer Representative for the Central District of California, co-chair of the Women in White Collar Defense (LA Chapter), and on the board of Project Youth-OCBF, a nonprofit dedicated to keeping Orange County's at-risk youth healthy and in school.
Department of Justice FCPA Pilot Program Outlines Incentives for Corporate Self-Disclosure and Cooperation: What's New and Will It Matter?
- January 31, 2018
Effectively Responding to Government Investigations, Jones Day MCLE University
- January 24, 2017
The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016: What Does it Mean for You? Jones Day University
- University of Southern California (J.D. 1994); University of California, Los Angeles (B.A. in Communications Studies 1991)
- California, Nevada, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and U.S. District Courts for the Central, Southern, Eastern, and Northern Districts of California and District of Nevada
- Served as an Assistant United States Attorney, Central District of California (1998-2014), including as Deputy Chief, Public Corruption and Civil Rights Section
The Legal 500 US, recommended for intellectual property — trade secrets: litigation and non-contentious matters (2017)
Co-chair, ABA White Collar Crime Committee, Southern California Regional Subcommittee (2010-2014)
Daily Journal's Top Women Litigators in California (2010)
Attorney General's Award for Distinguished Service (2009)
International Association of Chiefs of Police Civil Rights Award (2009, LA Metro Human Trafficking Task Force)