William P. Ferranti
Attorney at Law
Appellate Litigation & Major Motions
Litigation • Drafting • Revising • Argument • Advice
Constitutional, civil rights, & criminal
Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church & Sch. v. EEOC, 565 U.S. 171 (2012). Successfully represented numerous religious organizations as amici in support of certiorari and on the merits on the prevailing side of a case involving the “ministerial exception”—a First Amendment rule that requires secular courts to abstain from certain employment disputes between religious institutions and their leaders.
Rector, Wardens & Vestrymen of Christ Church in Savannah v. Bishop of Episcopal Diocese of Georgia, No. 11-1166, cert. pet. dismissed (2012); Gauss v. The Protestant Episcopal Church, No. 11-1139, cert. denied (2012). In separate cases from the Georgia and Connecticut Supreme Courts, represented local churches seeking review of whether the First Amendment requires civil courts to enforce denominational trust provisions, regardless of whether such provisions would be legally cognizable under generally applicable rules of state property law.
United States v. All Assets Held At Bank Julius Baer & Co., No. 11-5139 (D.C. Cir. 2011). Represented claimant on appeal in forfeiture action arising from theft and fraud by former Prime Minister of Ukraine.
Baylor v. United States, No. 07-1461 (U.S. 2008). Represented several amici in support of certiorari in a case challenging the use of the Hobbs Act to prosecute local crimes that have minimal impact on interstate commerce.
United States v. Bourke, No. 05-CR-518 (S.D.N.Y.) (pretrial proceedings in 2007-2008). Prepared motions and jury instructions as part of representation of criminal defendant charged with unlawful conspiracy and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and federal money laundering laws.
Pruitt v. Mote, 503 F.3d 647 (7th Cir. 2007) (en banc) (argued). In prisoner-abuse case, successfully obtained a new trial based on district court’s failure to recruit counsel pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915. Following a 2-1 defeat at the panel stage, obtained a unanimous decision in our client’s favor from the en banc court.
Cady v. Sheahan, 467 F.3d 1057 (7th Cir. 2006) (argued). Represented client challenging the decision by several police officers to stop and search him outside a Cook County courthouse.
United States v. Duran, 407 F.3d 828 (7th Cir. 2004) (argued). Represented individual on direct appeal from criminal conviction on gun and drug charges arising out of drug distribution conspiracy. The court agreed that certain evidence was improperly admitted, and that the jury instructions were flawed, but held that the errors did not require reversal. The court also agreed that Mr. Duran’s sentence violated the Sixth Amendment, and remanded for resentencing.