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Paul V. Kelly


P 617-305-1263
F 617-367-2155



Paul V. Kelly is a Principal in the Boston, Massachusetts, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He has extensive experience in white collar criminal defense, internal investigations, complex civil litigation and crisis management. Mr. Kelly is the firm’s White Collar and Government Enforcement Practice Group Leader. A former sports industry executive, he is also one of the firm’s Collegiate and Professional Sports Practice Group Leaders.

Criminal Law and White Collar Experience

Mr. Kelly has substantial trial experience in both state and federal courts. He was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts for 10 years (1987-1996) during which time he prosecuted a wide array of federal criminal violations, including racketeering, fraud, corruption, money laundering and murder. Upon leaving the Department of Justice, he focused his practice on defending companies, business executives and others being investigated or prosecuted for the alleged commission of criminal offenses. Included among the matters he handled successfully are workplace enforcement actions, bid-rigging and fraud charges brought against defense contractors, alleged securities fraud and other financial crimes by corporate executives, fraud offenses brought against health care providers, pharmaceutical companies, and their employees, and alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

While in private practice, Mr. Kelly has had significant experience in conducting internal investigations for companies, insurers, colleges and universities, governmental entities and other clients.  By way of example:

• He conducted an extensive internal investigation on behalf of a private security company that screened passengers on two of the doomed flights in connection with the 9/11 terrorist attacks, to determine whether employees of the company engaged in any criminal, reckless or negligent conduct.

• He served as a special prosecutor/legal advisor to the Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago and conducted a series of criminal investigations of suspected bribery, bid-rigging and other corrupt activities by former government officials and private parties within that country. Evidence developed resulted in criminal charges being laid in multiple cases.

• He has conducted several internal investigations for companies in the construction, financial services, technology, health care and hospitality industries involving alleged wrongdoing by company employees, subcontractors and outside vendors. These matters have involved acts of fraud, embezzlement, payment or receipt of bribes and kickbacks, theft of trade secrets and proprietary data, and falsification of records.

• He represented a billionaire entrepreneur and investigated receipt of extortionate threats and harassment by a third party/stalker.  Upon development of sufficient evidence, he convinced federal authorities to pursue criminal charges and against the offender. When the offender fled the country, he successfully tracked down the fugitive and helped to convince authorities in the host country to extradite the fugitive back to the United States to face prosecution.

Civil Litigation Experience

Mr. Kelly also has significant experience as a civil litigator.

  • Successfully represented a municipality and several police officials in a civil rights action
  • Successfully defended a prominent attorney charged with ethics violations
  • Successfully argued the appeal of a class action lawsuit alleging violations of the state wiretap statute by a telecommunications company before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
  • Successfully represented professional athletes in civil, criminal and administrative proceedings

Collegiate and Professional Sports Experience

In addition to his background as a trial attorney, Mr. Kelly has management and legal experience within collegiate and professional sports. He served as Executive Director of the National Hockey League Players Association, representing the 740 players of the NHL. He understands collective bargaining, salary cap management, franchise acquisition and location, player discipline, health and safety, drug testing, equipment issues, and the grievance and arbitration process. Upon leaving the NHL, Mr. Kelly established and thereafter served as Executive Director of College Hockey, Inc., the recruiting and promotional arm of NCAA Division I men’s hockey. Mr. Kelly has substantial working knowledge of NCAA bylaws and regulations, enforcement proceedings, and the challenges faced by collegiate athletic programs in such areas as recruiting, regulatory compliance, conference alignment and student-athlete behavior. He has served as a Board member of the Hockey Hall of Fame and a member of the International Council of USA Hockey.

Honors and Recognitions

  • The Best Lawyers in America
  • The Hockey News, 50 most influential people in the sport of hockey (2007-2011)
  • U.S. Department of Justice, Director's Award for Superior Performance (1992)
Best Lawyers Award Badge

Professional Associations and Activities

  • American Bar Association
  • Boston Bar Association
  • International Association of Defense Counsel
  • National Association of College and University Attorneys
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Sports Lawyers Association

See AllPaul V. Kelly in the News

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October 24, 2016
The Boston Globe

Paul Kelly Comments on TelexFree Co-owner Carlos Wanzeler

October 24, 2016

Paul Kelly comments on the sentencing of TelexFree CEO James Merrill and business partner, Carlos Wanzeler in "CEO of TelexFree pleads guilty, faces up to 10 years in prison," published in The Boston Globe. Subscription may be required to view article Read More

October 4, 2016
Jackson Lewis

Jackson Lewis Bolsters Its Sports Practice Roster With Addition of John Long in Dallas

October 4, 2016

DALLAS, TX (October 3, 2016) Jackson Lewis P.C., one of the country’s preeminent workplace law firms, is pleased to announce John G. Long has joined the firm’s Dallas office as Of Counsel.  Mr. Long joins Jackson Lewis from Michael Best & Friedrich, where he was a Senior Counsel member of the firm’s Labor and... Read More

August 15, 2016
Jackson Lewis

Jackson Lewis Attorneys Recognized in the Best Lawyers in America© 2017

August 15, 2016

WHITE PLAINS, NY August, 15, 2016 – Jackson Lewis P.C., one of the country’s preeminent workplace law firms, is pleased to announce that more than 145 attorneys throughout the firm’s 57 locations have been named to the Best Lawyers in America© 2017. In addition, 13 attorneys were named “Lawyer of the... Read More

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April 1, 2016

Law Enforcement Cannot Freeze Assets Not Tied to Crimes, Supreme Court Rules

April 1, 2016

The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-to-3 decision, has ruled that federal law enforcement may not freeze an accused’s assets needed to pay criminal defense lawyers if the assets are not linked to a crime. Luis v. United States, No. 14-419 (Mar. 30, 2016). A federal statute provides that a court may freeze before trial certain assets... Read More

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Title IX Sexual Misconduct – Comprehensive Webinar Series

November 2, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Credits: CLE - 1.0/1.2*, HRCI - 1.0, SHRM - 1.0
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Title IX Sexual Misconduct – Comprehensive Webinar Series

October 19, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM EST
Credits: CLE - 1.0/1.2*, HRCI - 1.0, SHRM - 1.0
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Title IX Sexual Misconduct – Comprehensive Webinar Series

October 5, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM EST
Credits: CLE - 1.0/1.2*, HRCI - 1.0, SHRM - 1.0
Watch Now

See AllBlog Posts by Paul V. Kelly

MLB Looks For A Strike Out In Stadium Safety Case
September 7, 2016

Major League Baseball has asked a California federal court to dismiss a proposed class action claim that accuses the league of failing to sufficiently protect spectators with safety netting. Brought in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Gail Payne et al. v. Read More

August 24, 2015

Authored by Robert J. Cino (Morristown, NJ) When the Supreme Court of New Jersey held in Quinlan v. Curtiss-Wright Corp., 204 N.J. 239 (2010) that an employee’s unauthorized taking of an employer’s confidential documents can constitute protected activity when the documents are used in support of a discrimination claim. Read More

Federal White Collar Crime Prosecutions at 20-Year Low
August 12, 2015

Written by Peter Torncello  Federal prosecutions of white-collar crime have fallen to a 20-year low, researchers at Syracuse University, analyzing Justice Department documents, have concluded. Researchers found the federal government brought 5,173 white-collar crime cases in the first 9 months of 2015. Read More