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What Others Say about Alan Ellis


Alan Ellis, who specializes in defending federal white-collar criminals, has made a career of bargaining to get his clients the lowest possible sentences and get them into the best prisons possible.

United States v. Walters 309 F. 2nd 589 592 (9th Cir 2002)

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in a published decision has described him as a “nationally recognized expert in federal criminal sentencing.”

K60 – ABC TV
The San Francisco affiliate of ABC-TV has stated that he is “the best in the business.”

Verdict Magazine, January 2007

More than one legal commentator has referred to Mr. Ellis as the “go-to guy in America” for federal sentencing if “you’re in deep trouble with the Feds.”

The Federal Lawyer, July 2006

“Alan Ellis is one this country’s pre-eminent criminal defense lawyers. A former president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, he specializes in sentencing and post-conviction matters.”

The Sentence Term-inators (ABA JOURNAL, March 2003)

“Ellis is one of only a handful of U.S. lawyers known as post-conviction specialist or sentence mitigators. These high-priced consultants specialize in getting their clients – among the most notorious defendants in the county – the lightest possible sentences to be served under the best possible conditions. Knowledge of prisons is critical in this job. Ellis shows his expertise as co-author of the Federal Prison Guidebook, sort of an overview of the entire federal prison system. Ellis says he makes no guarantees, but he won’t take a case that he believes has not merit. He limits his practice exclusively to the federal courts because federal law is the same wherever he goes.”

The Cell Broker (THE RECORDER – No. 179, Monday, September 16, 2002)

“Ellis is one of the nation’s preeminent post-conviction specialists, a lawyer who mitigates tough sentences with a thorough knowledge of the sentencing guidelines and federal prison system. His client list has included the famous and infamous, from Albert Taubman, the former head of Christie’s auction house to so-called American Taliban, John Walker Lindh.”

“Business leaders should probably start passing his name around at high-level meetings, too. With all the hubbub about cracking down on corporate corks, Ellis’ roster of clients – now about 80 – could start to strain under the demand.”

“Most are of the white-collar variety, he says, with a handful of drug defendants and a few sexual predators thrown in. Why hire Ellis? He is the author of ‘Federal Prison Guidebook.’ And he boasts that every federal judge in America has a copy. He employs forensic accountants, psychiatrists buy zoloft without prescription, and investigators to churn up information that can be used to mitigate his client’s crimes. He has contact within the Bureau of Prisons, which decides where prisoners are housed.”

“Alan literally wrote the book on federal prison facilities,” explains Tony West, of counsel at Morrison & Foerster [a prominent San Francisco law firm], one of Lindh’s defense lawyers.

Hiring A Good Attorney Can Be A Matter Of Time (THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, Sunday, October 30, 1994)

“Ellis, based in San Francisco, is one of a handful of “post-conviction” attorneys who help the convicted get the most out of the federal prison system.”

“With Ellis’ help, McGinley’s sentence was cut to eight years and a month. McGinley, 41, is serving the last four years at the Federal Prison Camp in Alderson, a minimum-security prison for nonviolent women.”

“I was told if you want the best, get Alan Ellis,” McGinley says.

A Secret Tooth, San Francisco Chronicle, February 26, 1992

Defense Lawyers Seeking Cushy Prisons, Not Softer Mercy Pleas, The Salt Lake Tribune, December 16, 1991

Defense Lawyers’ Chief Attacks Bush Crime Plan, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 21, 1991

Lawyers Offered Tips on Getting Clients into ‘Club Fed’, The Pittsburgh Press, December 22, 1991

Right Lawyer May Get Client Club Fed Instead Of Hard Time, The Sacramento Bee, December 19, 1991

Expert Names Top Five Prisons for White-Collar Criminals, 19 Corporate Crime Reporter 30, July 20, 2005

Federal Prison Guidebook review (PDF), The Champion

The Law Offices of Alan Ellis specializing In Federal Sentencing, Appeals, 2255 Habeas Corpus