Sarah Ray, Co-Chair of Latham & Watkins’ Bay Area Litigation & Trial Department, helps clients navigate complex commercial and antitrust litigation matters. Drawing on successful experience at all stages of litigation, she guides clients from the inception and investigation of a dispute working to identify and develop a strategy to win at the earliest possible stage of litigation, or if necessary, at trial. She has developed particular experience in class action litigation and claims of unfair competition, recently winning Top Defense Verdicts for two consecutive years.
Ms. Ray has significant experience as lead trial counsel in federal and state courts defending corporations against antitrust and unfair competition allegations as well as handling issues at the intersection of competition and complex commercial litigation.
Specifically, she navigates cases related to monopolization and attempted monopolization, price-fixing, tying, refusal to deal, fraud, and unfair competition. She has also handled matters for clients relating to patent misuse, patent pools, and other standard setting organizations. She has a particular ability to distill complex issues and develop a compelling narrative for presentation at trial.
Ms. Ray is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and serves on the board of the Giffords Law Center To Prevent Gun Violence. Ms. Ray clerked for Judge Vaughn R. Walker, Chief Judge of the Northern District of California and Judge Samuel Conti, Senior District Judge of the Northern District of California.
Prior to attending law school, Ms. Ray worked in film production and story development in the entertainment industry at Creative Artists Agency, Universal Studios, and Warner Bros.
As Co-Chair of Latham’s Women Enriching Business (WEB) Committee from 2014 to March 2019, she was instrumental in developing a local and global committee structure and in creating global programming to promote women through trailblazing initiatives focused on women’s professional development, mentoring, and networking.
Ms. Ray’s experience includes representing:
- Oracle, as lead counsel in a week-long federal jury trial, defending against claims of fraudulent misrepresentation and fraudulent inducement brought by a former customer of NetSuite business software. After successfully excluding plaintiff’s damages expert before trial, Ms. Ray and her team successfully urged the jury to reject plaintiff’s theory of fraud and deny both compensatory and punitive damages. The jury returned a complete defense win for Oracle and NetSuite after deliberating for little more than an hour.
- Edeniq, Inc., an ethanol technology company, in defense of claims of breach of contract and fraud brought in California state court by a public corporation after a failed merger. Ms. Ray led the team in defeating all seven causes of action brought by the plaintiff through motion practice (both demurrer and summary judgment). In light of the total victory, the court awarded Edeniq its attorneys’ fees and costs.
- JELD-WEN in a trade secret misappropriation case. Secured a plaintiff’s verdict following a two-week trial in federal court, in which the jury found that the defendant stole eight distinct trade secrets owned and used by JELD-WEN, Inc. and awarded US$1.2 million in damages.
- Ford Motor Company in an antitrust class action pending in the complex litigation department of the San Francisco Superior Court. Judge Karnow granted Ford Canada’s motion for entry of judgment on res judicata grounds, finding that a prior federal court decision granting summary judgment in favor of Ford Canada in a related multi-district litigation (In re New Motor Vehicles Canadian Export Antitrust Litigation, 632 F. Supp. 2d 42 (D.Me. 2009) precluded plaintiffs in this California action from re-litigating antitrust claims based on the same conduct and alleged injury as the federal claims.
- Oracle in a putative class action in which plaintiffs alleged that Oracle entered into agreements with other technology companies not to hire or solicit each other’s employees in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act and California law. The court granted Oracle’s motion to dismiss the Second Amended Complaint with prejudice, entering a final judgment in Oracle’s favor.
- Toshiba in a federal case brought by a purported class of indirect purchasers alleging that a patent pool of which Toshiba is a member is an anticompetitive combination among horizontal competitors. Plaintiffs’ claims were predicated on Section 1 of the Sherman Act, and involved allegations of patent misuse, violations of California antitrust and unfair competition laws. The court granted defendants’ motion to dismiss without leave to amend, finding that the claims were barred by the statute of limitations.
- An industrial pipe manufacturer in a FTC investigation of the ductile iron pipe industry amid allegations of a Sherman Act, Section 1 conspiracy.
- Eaton Corporation
- In the defense of a monopolization action in which independent service organizations sought the right to use Eaton’s service software.
- In the defense of a monopolization action brought by a competitor in the heavy-duty truck transmission business.
- The Hearst Corp. in resolving private antitrust litigation and a simultaneous DOJ antitrust investigation relating to a billion-dollar multifaceted newspaper transaction.
- Oracle in a high-profile, two-part trial with Hewlett-Packard, in which HP alleged that Oracle’s actions in halting software development for the Intel Itanium microprocessor violated contract and unfair competition laws.
- Apple in ongoing counseling regarding procurement and supply issues.
- Mercury Payment Systems in a false advertising and unfair competition case alleging intentional interference with contractual relations, and intentional interference with prospective economic advantage.