Eric Pruitt has nearly 20 years of experience as a criminal and civil trial lawyer. Eric focuses his practice on white-collar criminal defense, assisting in-house counsel and management in conducting internal investigations and responding to governmental investigations, and complex commercial litigation. His experience as a former Assistant U.S. Attorney uniquely qualifies Mr. Pruitt to represent clients in all aspects of grand jury and regulatory investigations and in criminal and civil trials.
Prior to joining the Cotsirilos Firm, Mr. Pruitt was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Chicago for 12 years, where he worked in both the criminal and civil divisions of the U.S Attorney’s Office, tried 16 cases to verdict, and served for several years as a member of the Health Care Fraud Unit within the Financial Crimes Section.
In the criminal division, Mr. Pruitt prosecuted complex cases from investigation through appeal involving all varieties of health care fraud, violations of the Anti-Kickback Statue, public corruption, bank fraud, tax fraud, racketeering, money laundering, and cyber-crime. He developed deep experience working with federal agencies charged with investigating health care and financial fraud, including but not limited to the OIG for HHS, the FBI, the FDA, and the Department of Homeland Security. Mr. Pruitt also trained other prosecutors from across the country to investigate and prosecute health care fraud in his role as an instructor at the Department of Justice’s National Advocacy Center.
Before joining the criminal division, Mr. Pruitt worked in the civil division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, where he represented the United States as both plaintiff and defendant in cases involving violations of the False Claims Act, the Stark Law, government contracting fraud and medical malpractice. Mr. Pruitt frequently represented the government as a plaintiff in parallel civil and criminal proceedings initiated by government agencies. In representing the government as a plaintiff, Mr. Pruitt obtained over $100 million in in settlements and judgments for his client. This experience provides significant value to clients in FCA proceedings and government contracting matters.
Prior to his time as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Mr. Pruitt practiced in the complex and commercial litigation group of Sidley Austin LLP. In that position, Mr. Pruitt represented clients in corporate internal investigations involving accounting and financial fraud, as well as in litigation matters relating to securities fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract.
Mr. Pruitt began his career as a law clerk to the Honorable Harry D. Leinenweber in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.