Law Office of Jonathan R. Howden
Areas of practice and expertise

Jonathan has been in private practice since 2005, first as a Partner at Thelen LLP and then as a Partner at Winston & Strawn. He opened his current practice in late 2011. He has successfully represented companies and individuals in international antitrust investigations, fraud, international money laundering, high tech, environmental, and international bribery investigations. In January 2011, he led a trial team in defending a Canadian company and its President and CEO in a jury trial in which the Antitrust Division charged the defendants with wire fraud and money laundering relating to a defense subcontract. The defense was so effective that the judge granted a directed verdict of acquittal to all of the defendants on all of the charges at the close of the government’s case. Such verdicts are extremely rare and are only granted when the defense has completely dismantled the government’s case, such that “no reasonable juror could find guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Before going into private practice, Jonathan was a federal prosecutor for 25 years, first for the Antitrust Division of the United States Department of Justice and then with the United States Attorneys Office in the Northern District of California, where he was involved in the investigation, prosecution and trial of virtually every variety of federal criminal violation. He did tours with the White Collar Crime section, the CHIPs (Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property) section, Forfeiture section and was the Regional Coordinator for the Organized Crime, Drug Task Force, overseeing major narcotics violations throughout the Western United States. As a result of his role in the successful prosecution and trial of Pavel Lazerenko (the former Prime Minister of Ukraine) on wire fraud, stolen property and international money laundering charges, he received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor bestowed upon federal prosecutors.

Because of his extensive experience as a prosecutor, Jonathan provides a unique insight into the strategies and tactics of federal investigations and prosecutions. He also offers a keen understanding of the material issues in any given case as well as an informed analysis of the relative strengths and weaknesses of the government’s position.


  • A.B. Anthropology, University of California at Berkeley, 1976.

  • J.D., University of California, Hastings College of Law, 1980.


  • Trial Attorney (Honors Program), Antitrust Division, San Francisco Field Office, United States Department of Justice, 1980-1986.

  • Assistant United States Attorney, United States Attorneys Office, Northern District of California, 1986-2005.

  • Partner, Thelen LLP, 2005-2008.

  • Partner, Winston & Strawn, 2008-2011.

  • Law Offices of Jonathan R. Howden, 2011-Present.