Thursday, November 08, 2012

Acting Antitrust Chief to Step Down

This posting was written by John W. Arden.

After six months in the position, Joseph Wayland, Acting Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Justice of Department Antitrust Division, will step down next week, according to published reports.

Wayland became the acting antitrust chief in April 2012, following the departure of then-Acting Assistant Attorney General Sharis A. Pozen.

There has not been an Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Antitrust Division since Christine Varney left the position on August 5, 2011, to return to private practice. President Obama nominated William J. Baer as antitrust chief in February 2012, but the nomination has been stalled.

Prior to his current role, Wayland served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Enforcement at the Antitrust Division. He joined the division in September 2010 and worked on a number of high-profile cases, including the Justice Department’s successful challenges to AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile, USA, Inc. and H&R Block’s proposed acquisition of 2SS Holdings, the maker of TaxACT tax preparation software.

Wayland is reported to be returning to Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, the firm he left to join the Antitrust Division.

No announcement has been made regarding Wayland’s successor.

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