Sali A. Rakower has served as Senior Fellow of the West Point Center for the Rule of Law since 2009. She served as the Center's inaugural Director from 2008-2009. Previously, she worked in private practice at the law firm of White & Case LLP in New York, where she litigated cases from 1999-2008.
Ms. Rakower's areas of practice have included complex commercial litigation, litigation involving foreign sovereigns and their state-owned subsidiaries, and litigation involving issues of international public law. Ms. Rakower has appeared before U.S. federal and state courts, and courts in France and Switzerland.
Ms. Rakower has substantial experience representing U.S. and foreign multinational corporations in matters involving the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), including internal investigations of potential violations of the FCPA, FCPA compliance programs and risk audits and assessments, and investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Ms. Rakower led audit teams composed of other attorneys, forensic accountants and former FBI investigators around the world on compliance reviews and internal investigations for U.S. and multinational corporations.
Ms. Rakower also represented major French institutions in a series of civil, regulatory and criminal proceedings involving highly complicated cross-border business transactions. Ms. Rakower represented Credit Lyonnais and Consortium de Realisation in a multibillion-dollar civil lawsuit stemming from the acquisition of high-yield securities of a failed California insurance company.
Middle East Experience
Ms. Rakower’s experience in the Middle East includes representation of the governments of Jordan and Iraq in various legal matters. Ms. Rakower counseled the Iraqi government and conducted extensive research and analysis on issues relating to the UN Oil-for-Food scandal.
Ms. Rakower has also conducted legal work in Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. Ms. Rakower previously worked for the Jordanian government in Washington, D.C. as a media consultant and political analyst. She has lived and traveled extensively in the Middle East. In December 2010, Ms. Rakower presented a lecture on the Status of Women in the Middle East at the New York City Bar Association commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.
Prosecution of Former Perpetrators of the 1994 Rwandan Genocide
In 2002, while on sabbatical from White & Case LLP, Ms. Rakower served in the Prosecutor's Office of the U.N. International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Tanzania, where she assisted in the prosecution of former Rwandan military leaders for their role in the 1994 genocide. Ms. Rakower conducted interviews in Rwanda of both witnesses and former perpetrators of crimes and helped gather and prepare evidence for use at trial.
Pro Bono Practice
Ms. Rakower's pro bono practice has involved international women's rights and human rights issues. Ms. Rakower was honored by Human Rights First for her pro bono representation of Iraqi translators who worked for US troops during the war in Iraq. She was also recognized by White & Case LLP for her pro bono work during her tenure at the firm.
Ms. Rakower has presented various lectures at U.S. law schools and bar associations. Her lectures have included the following topics: international humanitarian law (Fordham Law School); international criminal law and the role of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (Albany Law School); the status of women in the Middle East in light of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (the New York City Bar Association); as well as topics concerning Iraqi culture and politics, the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and the Role of International Criminal Tribunals (West Point Military Academy). In April 2011, Ms. Rakower served as a panelist on the subject of “Women in Islam” at the West Point Center for the Rule of Law’s Conference on Gender Justice.
Foreign Governments Are Not Immune from New York City's Assertion of Tax Liens Against Their Diplomatic Property, New York State Bar Association Commercial and Federal Litigation Section Newsletter (Winter 2007).
English, French, Arabic
The views presented in Ms. Rakower’s scholarship and commentary are her personal views and do not necessarily reflect those of the West Point Center for the Rule of Law, United States Military Academy, Department of the Army or any other agency or instrumentality of the federal government.