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Criminal Defense

Louis J. Shapiro Esq.

Formerly a deputy public defender in Los Angeles County, Shapiro’s advanced skill set is only matched by his devoted work ethic, one that places his clients in the best position where they often obtain favorable results. Considered one of the top criminal defense attorneys in Los Angeles, Shapiro regularly trains new attorneys in the most effective approaches and methods for handling criminal law matters.

Shapiro is a certified criminal law specialist by the State Bar of California. He concentrates his practice on white and blue-collar criminal defense. He aggressively, creatively, and successfully represents clients in a vast variety of state and federal criminal matters.

Having earned his law degree from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Shapiro began his career with a solid academic foundation and invaluable legal experience. While in law school, he worked for the New York State Attorney General, Elliot Spitzer, and several agencies including Legal Aid Society’s Immigration Detainee Unit. He also clerked for the federal public defenders’ office in Los Angeles.

Shapiro is on the board of the Los Angeles County Criminal Justice Executive Committee, California Innocence Project, and California Attorneys for Criminal Justice.

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IRS Defense & Tax Law

Steven Chung Esq.

Steven Chung is a tax attorney in Los Angeles. He assists clients with tax planning as well as resolving tax disputes between the Internal Revenue Service and state tax agencies. He has clients nationwide.

He received his law degree from Whittier Law School and his LLM in Taxation from Loyola Law School with honors and high distinction. He was a national finalist in the 2006 American Bar Association Law Student Tax Challenge. He was also published in the Virginia Tax Review, one of the premier academic tax journals in the country.

He is a weekly columnist at Above The Law, one of the premier legal news sites in the country where he writes about the Paycheck Protection Program, law firms, and taxes. He has previously written for Lawyerist.com, a website providing practice tips for law firms.

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CGMA White Collar Defense Forensic Accountant

David K. Golbahar CPA/CFF

A forensic CPA can be invaluable in demonstrating that the government’s quantification of the amount of the fraud is overstated and can assist counsel to reduce a potential sentence. FCPA’s are also valuable to the defense counsel in helping him or her understands complex accounting, auditing, internal control, tax, and other financial issues which are usually critical in a successful white-collar crime defense.

David is a skilled forensic accountant and expert witness. Attorneys and clients rely on David’s focused approach to investigating fraud, determining damages for complex financial disputes, and assisting in defense matters.

David fulfills multiple needs in criminal and civil litigation matters. He is a court-appointed expert in the Superior Court of California and frequently is the forensic expert or valuation consultant for disputes.

As a trusted advisor, David works closely with business owners to improve accounting operations and protect their businesses by reducing enterprise risk and managing cash flow.

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CARES Act Background

U.S. Attorney General William Barr has instructed federal authorities to investigate COVID-19-related fraud. This includes violations such as false loan application statements, conspiracy to commit fraud, bank fraud, and wire fraud.

In March of 2020, President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), which provided $2.2 trillion of emergency appropriations. It also provided a wide range of economic relief for businesses of all sizes, tax relief for individuals and businesses, enhanced unemployment insurance for individuals, and other policies. The CARES Act also provided substantial resources and new authorities for federal oversight of COVID-19 related relief efforts.

Pursuant to the CARES Act, Congress formed new investigative authorities, which handle criminal related actions to the CARES Act.

Section 15010 of the CARES Act creates PRAC within the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE). The PRAC is charged with promoting transparency and conducting oversight of any coronavirus-related funds to “prevent and detect fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement” and “mitigate major risks that cut across program and agency boundaries.” To meet those objectives, the PRAC is authorized to conduct its own investigations or collaborate with any other inspectors general, as well as hold public hearings and issue subpoenas for records and testimony, including from private sector individuals, and seek enforcement of its subpoenas in federal courts. In the case of any party “unreasonably” refusing or failing to provide requested information or assistance, the PRAC is required to notify appropriate congressional committees.

Section 15010 also describes the PRAC’s functions and authorities, which include:

  • Auditing or reviewing coronavirus-related spending, including charges to federal contracts, to determine whether wasteful spending, poor contract or grant management, or other abuses occurred and referring matters to the inspector general of the appropriate agency
  • Conducting randomized audits to identify fraud
  • Reviewing the economy, efficiency, and effectiveness in both program administration and fraud, waste and abuse in coronavirus response programs and operations
  • Reviewing competition requirements for contracts and grants
  • Reporting to the attorney general any instances when PRAC has reasonable grounds to believe there is a violation of Federal criminal law


The CARES Act Defense Group has extensive experience in handling white-collar criminal investigations and cases, particularly with respect to the receipt and use of federal funds. If you have been contacted by the federal authorities about a CARES Act related matter, feel free to contact our office immediately. Early and effective intervention can make a world of difference in these types of cases.