Matthew David Ridings, CCEP
Matt’s practice focuses on antitrust and anti-corruption related matters. Matt has successfully tried numerous criminal and civil trials that have alleged various antitrust, RICO, and other corruption-related violations. Outside of the court room, Matt has defended companies and individuals in investigations and proceedings brought by the Department of Justice, Federal Trade Commission, Securities and Exchange Commission, European Commission, and the Canadian Competition Bureau, among others.
Matt is a Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional® (CCEP) and proactively counsels clients on risk management and organizational compliance and ethics. He has conducted risk assessments and created compliance programs and initiatives for international clients, as well as advised and trained global companies on compliance with US and international antitrust and anti-corruption laws, including the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), UK Bribery Act, and Sapin II.
White Collar Crime and Enforcement / Internal Investigations
- Won jury verdict acquitting construction executive of all charges in federal corruption and fraud prosecution (only defendant to win acquittal in 60+ charged).
- Won reversal of convictions in the “Amish Beard Cutting” cases, the first cases brought in the United States under the Hate Crimes Prevention Act for religiously motivated violence.
- Defended an architect charged with conspiracy, mail fraud, theft of government property, and extortion in a nine-day trial in federal court.
- Led FCPA and anti-corruption due diligence team in acquisition of multi-national telecommunications company with operations in 70 countries, including Africa, Asia, Russia, and South America.
- Conducted international criminal investigations in emerging markets, including Beijing and Shanghai, and investigated criminal allegations throughout Asia and Europe.
- Represented Taiwanese national in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice; no charges filed.
- Represented foreign national in world-wide antitrust cartel investigation involving the United States Department of Justice, Japan Fair Trade Commission, and European Commission; no charges filed.
- Represented international chemical company in antitrust cartel investigation led by the U.S. Department of Justice.
- Conducted investigation into Securities and Exchange Commission allegations of insider trading surrounding a private equity buyout.
- Investigated federal bribery and corruption allegations in connection with construction of public works project.
- Represented broker-dealer in FINRA enforcement proceedings regarding allegations of false statements made in connection with the sale of securities.
- Conducted internal investigation regarding alleged false and fraudulent statements made in connection with the sale of securities.
- Conducted investigation of alleged kickback scheme in connection with the sale of securities to public entities.
Antitrust, Distributorship and Anti-Corruption Counseling and Compliance
- Counseled clients on the application of and compliance with U.S. and European Union antitrust law, including the legality of product distribution restraints.
- Assisted businesses with the creation, development, and ongoing assessment of compliance programs, particularly relating to antitrust and anti-corruption compliance, including the FCPA and UK Bribery Act.
- Drafted anti-corruption compliance policies and handbooks and conducted training seminars for antitrust and anticorruption law.
- Counseled Tier 1 automotive supplier regarding antitrust implications of a joint venture and/or strategic alliance with another Tier 1 supplier in the creation and manufacture of automotive production.
- Advised international building products manufacturer on the creation and maintenance of North American product distribution channel.
- Advised clients on termination or appointment of dealers and distributors in the United States and internationally.
Antitrust, Competition and Product Distribution Litigation
- Represented global services firm in Civil Investigative Demand from the Federal Trade Commission.
- Represented manufacturer of aviation fuel filtration systems in connection with Civil Investigative Demand from the Department of Justice.
- Represented manufacturer of offshore oil drilling equipment in response to Request for Additional Information and Documentary Materials (Second Request) from the Department of Justice and Canadian Competition Bureau; no merger challenge filed.
- Won multi-million dollar jury verdict to recover damages against former employee accused of theft of trade secrets and breach of duty of loyalty to his employer.
- Won compensatory and punitive damage award against competitor of client for tortiously interfering with client’s relationship with its employee.
- Represented a national company alleged to have participated in RICO scheme to defraud government purchasers of services.
- Won jury verdict on behalf of global media licensing company in copyright infringement litigation involving Internet infringement.
- Won dismissal of multi-million Dollar antitrust claim against corporate scrap metal executive.
- Represented Tier 2 automotive supplier in litigation surrounding the termination of its sales representatives.
- Secured injunctive relief enforcing non-disclosure and non-competition covenants against several employees in the polymers industry.
- Obtained restraining order preventing Food & Drug Administration from blocking the importation of electronic cigarettes, ruling upheld on appeal.
- Successfully defended manufacturer against price discrimination antitrust claim.
- Secured judgment and permanent injunctive relief enforcing manufacturer's trade dress rights in its products.
- Represented auto glass manufacturer in patent litigation against infringing foreign manufacturer.
- Representation of a manufacturer in an action by a distributor alleging violation of the New Jersey Franchise Practices Act.
- “Antitrust Agencies Release New Vertical Merger Guidelines,” Thompson Hine Antitrust Law Update, January 2020
- Co-author, "Justice Department Emphasizes Antitrust Enforcement Through Creation of Multi-Agency and Bid-Rigging Strike Force," Thompson Hine Antitrust & Government Contracts Update, November 2019
- Co-author, Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts, Franchising, American Bar Association (4th ed.)
- “The Defend Trade Secrets Act: Consequences for Trade Secret Litigation,” Thompson Hine Business Litigation Update, July 2014
- “Court Clarifies Foreign Government ‘Instrumentality’ Under FCPA,” Thompson Hine FCPA/Antibribery Update, May 21, 2014
- “Supreme Court Clarifies False Advertising Standing,” Thompson Hine Unfair Competition Update, April 2014
- Editor, Antitrust Discovery Handbook, American Bar Association (3d ed. 2013)
- "Conquer Modern Coconspirator Declarations," For The Defense, January 2013
- "Seeking a Downward Departure for Small Business Impact," For The Defense, July 2011
- Author/editor, Antitrust Law Development (Sixth), 2010 Annual Review, American Bar Association, 2011
- Co-author, "Antitrust Conspiracies in Franchise Systems After American Needle," Franchise Law Journal, 2011
- Contributing author, Business Torts: A Fifty State Guide, Aspen Publishing, 2007 to 2020
- Contributor, Antitrust Handbook for Franchise and Distribution Practitioners, American Bar Association, 2008
- Contributor, Antitrust Law and Economics of Product Distribution, American Bar Association, 2006
- Benchmark Litigation Under 40 Litigation Hot List, 2019
- Selected for inclusion in 2013 to 2019 Ohio Super Lawyers® as a Rising Star
Listed in The Best Lawyers in America, 2014 to 2020
- American Bar Association
- Ohio State Bar Association, Member, Antitrust Section Council, 2011 to 2014
- Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
- Secretary, Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad Board of Trustees
- Sixth Circuit Criminal Justice Act appointment