Melissa Meister is an experienced trial and appellate attorney who has tried cases and argued appeals in state and federal courts across the country, including the United States Supreme Court. A former Department of Justice Trial Attorney and Assistant United States Attorney, Melissa is not only a skilled trial attorney and appellate advocate, but has extensive experience conducting internal investigations. Melissa works on both high stakes criminal and regulatory defense matters and civil litigation and has worked on numerous parallel criminal and civil investigations and prosecutions, including numerous fraud, cryptocurrency, and False Claims Act matters.
Melissa has represented Fortune 500 companies, blockchain and cryptocurrency startups, visionaries, hospitals, doctors, large pension funds, public universities, whistleblowers, and individuals in a variety of criminal and civil matters throughout the country. Melissa enjoys learning about her clients and their businesses and is as comfortable thinking on her feet in a courtroom as she is in talking to her clients and their employees on an individual basis.
Melissa is a former Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals clerk for Judge William C. Canby, a former legal writing professor, and her law review note was cited by the United States Supreme Court in Kennedy v. Louisiana in 2008. Melissa attended The University of Arizona for both college and law school. During law school, Melissa won the moot court competition, was an editor for the University of Arizona Law Review and took particular pride in winning first place in The University of Arizona’s flag football and women’s basketball intramural competitions. Melissa graduated law school summa cum laude and Order of the Coif.
Melissa is currently admitted to practice in California, Arizona, and the District of Colombia.
- Secured a complete dismissal of charges against client mid-trial for defendant in a federal wire fraud trial in the Central District of California.
- Obtained a not guilty verdict on all counts in a public corruption trial in California state court.
- Represented a whistleblower in federal FCA case alleging healthcare fraud at 14 hospitals throughout California; secured over $60 million settlement for the United States and whistleblower.
- Obtained $10 million jury verdict for client who was molested repeatedly at defendant’s public facility due to the negligence of public facility.
- Investigated corporate malfeasance on behalf of CEO and CFO at a pension fund valued at more than $12 billion.
- Member of high-profile investigation team tasked with investigating culture of sexual harassment and abuse within the marching band at The Ohio State University and proposing system-wide solutions for its eradication.
Other Professional Activities
- Women’s White-Collar Defense Association
- Litigation Counsel of America
- Melissa Meister Named to Best Lawyers in America (2023) for Criminal Defense: White Collar
- Melissa Meister Quoted by NewsNation Rush Hour about Amazon Criticized for Sharing Doorbell Video with Police
- Melissa Meister Quoted by Law360 on DOJ’s Listening Problem in Trials
- The Trial of Paige Thompson, the Alleged Capital One Hacker, is Underway with Brian Klein, Melissa Meister, and Emily Stierwalt Acting as Defense Counsel
- Melissa Meister Quoted by Law360 on DOJ’s Antitrust Leniency Overhaul
- Three Waymaker Lawyers Lead Pro Bono Win for Foreign Client in Trademark Infringement Case
- Melissa Meister Named to Best Lawyers in America (2022) for Criminal Defense: White Collar
- Experienced Trial and Appellate Attorney Melissa Meister Joins Baker Marquart [Waymaker]