Michael F. Easley, Jr.
Michael F. Easley, Jr. is now the top-ranking federal law enforcement official in the Eastern District of North Carolina. United States Attorney Easley extends his gratitude to President Joseph R. Biden for putting forward his nomination on September 28, 2021, which the United States Senate eventually confirmed on November 19, 2021. U.S. Attorney Easley also appreciated Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis’s strong support throughout his confirmation process. As administered by United States District Judge James C. Dever III, United States Attorney Michael Easley took the oath of Office to become the Chief Federal Law Enforcement Official for the Eastern District of North Carolina on November 26, 2021. U.S. Attorney Michael F. Easley, Jr. assumed the highest position in the Office of the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, taking over from former Acting U.S. Attorney G. Norman Acker, III, who was appointed into the position in February 2021, upon the resignation of former U.S. Attorney Robert J. Higdon, Jr.
Table of Contents
- Educational Background
- Legal Career of Attorney Michael Easley
- Private Practice at the McGuire Woods LLP
- Honors & Awards and Memberships
- Bar Associations
- Bar Admissions
- Court Admissions
- Most Significant Litigated Cases
- 10 most significant litigated matters handled by Attorney Michael Easley
- Nature of Legal Practice
- Office Jurisdiction
- Published Writings by Attorney Easley
- Contact Details of State’s Attorney Easley
- Raleigh Office
- Public Information Officer
- Social Media Profiles of Michael Easley
A native of North Carolina, U.S. Attorney Michael Easley attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, earning his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and graduating with honors and distinction in May 2007. He subsequently pursued a law degree and attended the University of North Carolina School of Law, receiving his Juris Doctorate three years later, in May 2010.
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law (2007–2010) J.D., May 2010
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2003–2007) B.A., May 2007
Legal Career of Attorney Michael Easley
Establishing his career as a lawyer as early as his first year in legal school, Top Federal Prosecutor Michael Easley, Jr. joined Hendrick Motorsports as an Intern from June to July 2007. He also served as a Summer Associate at McGuire Woods, LLP from May to July 2008 and at the Smith Anderson Blount Dorsett Mitchell & Jernigan, LLP the following month. A year later, U.S. Attorney Easley filled his summer as a Summer Associate at the Robinson, Bradshaw & Hinson, P.A., from May to June 2009, returning to McGuire Woods LLP, working in the law firm from June to July 2009. United States Attorney Easley also briefly served as a Prosecution Extern at the Wake County District Attorney’s Office from January to May 2009 and from August to October of the same year. In this externship, U.S. Attorney Easley assisted state and federal prosecutors in their responsibilities before and at trial. All while studying in law school, U.S. Attorney Easley frequently handled prosecution cases on behalf of the District Attorney’s Office and the 10th Judicial District.
Private Practice at the McGuire Woods LLP
Prior to joining the Office of the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Top Federal Prosecutor Michael Easley was devoted to private practice. He was initially appointed as an Associate at McGuire Woods LLP, serving in this position for approximately nine years, from September 2010 to December 2019. In January of 2020, U.S. Attorney Easley was named Partner in the law firm’s litigation practice, consequently shifting the focus of his legal practice to government investigations and litigation. During his legal career at the McGuire Woods, Top Federal Prosecutor Michael Easley handled complex matters, including those involving complicated or novel legal issues, significant amounts of damage, substantial factual records, or all three combined. Moreover, U.S. Attorney Easley has managed an array of investigation and prosecution matters, along with pre-trial case evaluations and risk assessments. The cases that U.S. Attorney Easley presided over were predominantly focused on criminal prosecution, complex commercial matters, data privacy, grand jury investigations, personal injury, and securities litigation. He has conducted matters as they proceeded in court, administrative proceedings, arbitration, and/or mediation. As a litigator whose legal practice emphasized internal investigations and trial court work in state and federal courts, U.S. Attorney Michael Easley, Jr. represented individuals and business entities in complex, high-stakes civil, criminal, and regulatory matters. Throughout his career, U.S. Attorney Easley has handled an array of prosecution, including business torts, consumer protection, criminal law, environmental cases, issues of financial services and securities, government contracting, and professional negligence.
Honors & Awards and Memberships
- North Carolina Super Lawyers, Super Lawyers Magazine (Rising Star, 2015–2021)
- North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society, North Carolina Equal Access to Justice Commission – Pro Bono Resource Center (2019)
- Legal Elite – Young Gun, Business North Carolina Magazine (2014)
- Winning Team, Kilpatrick Stockton 1L Mock Trial Competition, University of North Carolina School of Law (2008)
- Phi Beta Kappa, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2007)
- Certificate of Appreciation from the Orange County Board of Commissioners in recognition of “life saving response to Fire, Rescue, and Medical emergencies experienced by the Citizens of Orange County,” North Carolina (2006)
- Literary Contest Award for Best Story by a Varsity Athlete, Raleigh Fine Arts Society (2003)
Dedicated and efficient as he was, Top Federal Prosecutor Michael F. Easley has been honored and awarded numerous times. He was consistently named as a Rising Star in the Super Lawyers Magazine of the North Carolina Super Lawyers from 2015 to 2021. He was also honored as a Legal Elite under the Young Guns of the Business North Carolina Magazine in 2014. United States Attorney Easley was not only committed to serving the public through the prosecution of crimes but also through being an active member of the community. He once was a part of the Steering Committee of the North Carolina Museum of History Young Associates, serving as its member from 2010 to 2014. U.S. Attorney Michael Easley was also a Voter Empowerment Volunteer of the Fair Fight Action in 2020 and a Mentor of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity for several years, from 2012 to 2015, in 2017, and then from 2019 to 2020. Moreover, U.S. Attorney Easley contributed time to various bars and community organizations, including serving as a member of the Board of Visitors of the University of North Carolina and the Criminal Justice Section Council, and in the Integration, Equity & Equal Justice Task Force of the North Carolina Bar Association.
- North Carolina Bar Association
- Criminal Justice Section Council
- Task Force on Integration, Equity & Equal Justice
- Law Week / Liberty Bell Award Committee
- Federal Bar Association, Eastern District of North Carolina Chapter
- Tenth Judicial District Bar and Wake County Bar Association
- Board of Directors (2014–2016)
- Professionalism Committee
- CLE Sub-Committee
- Bar Awards Committee
- Susie Sharp Inn of Court
- Criminal Justice Act Panel for the Eastern District of North Carolina
- North Carolina, September 2010
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina (October 2010)
- United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina (December 2010)
- All state courts in North Carolina (September 2010)
- Board of Visitors, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2021–Present)
- Old Chatham Golf Club (2013–Present)
- Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, Mentor (2012-2015, 2017, 2019-2020)
- Fair Fight Action, Voter Empowerment Volunteer (2020)
- North Carolina Museum of History Young Associates, Steering Committee (2010–2014)
Most Significant Litigated Cases
The United States Attorney Michael Easley is known for representing individuals and businesses, including court-appointed indigent criminal defendants in federal court. In 2019, he began representing The Boeing Company in a litigation case involving the Department of Justice investigation and a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA). The case involved allegations of conspiracy to defraud the government, which involved the Federal Aviation Administration’s Aircraft Evaluation Group (FAA AEG) as it released an evaluation of differences in training for the 727 MAX airplane of The Boeing Company. Top Federal Prosecutor Easley also previously worked to defend the former directors of SCANA Corporation in a putative class action, which alleged that former members of the SCANA board of directors breached fiduciary duties in relation to a merger. Among his other, most significant litigated matters include representing an individual defendant in a federal court matter involving charges against a former Marine at Camp Lejeune, who was allegedly involved in a conspiracy, larceny, and sale of U.S. Government property. U.S. Attorney Easley also handled a litigation involving $80 million in losses concerning fraudulent certificates of deposit as a part of a $7 billion investment fraud scheme. In this case, he represented the clearing broker of McGuire Woods LLP before a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, working on general fact development, drafting motions and briefs and collaborating with expert witnesses in preparation for trial.
Having experience as a sole counsel, U.S. Attorney Michael Francis Easley once handled a federal court case involving charges of access device fraud, identity theft, and money laundering, which arose from an investigation by the U.S. Secret Service in collaboration with local law enforcement, against ten defendants in total. Working as sole counsel on behalf of defendant Sanchez, U.S. Attorney Easley handled the investigation of underlying facts, analyzing discovery, negotiating the plea, arguing and examining witnesses, and taking charge of both the briefing and oral argument at sentencing.
10 most significant litigated matters handled by Attorney Michael Easley
- United States v. The Boeing Company (2019-2021)
- In re SCANA Corporation Public Shareholder Litigation (2020-2021)
- United States Securities and Exchange Commission v. SCANA Corporation et al. (2018-2020)
- United States v. Wilder (2017-2018)
- Kiebach et al. v. Pershing (2013-2017)
- United States v. Sanchez et al. (2015-2017)
- Avery Avenue Partners v. Lowes Foods, LLC (2016)
- Duke Energy Progress, Inc. v. N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Division of Water Resources (2015)
- Kneese et al. v. Pershing (2013-2014)
- North Carolina Department of State Treasurer v. The Bank of New York Mellon and The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation (2012-2015)
Further details regarding the above litigation matters may be found in the public questionnaire accessible here.
Nature of Legal Practice
Overall, the legal practice of Attorney Michael Easley has provided him with substantial knowledge and experience in all litigation components. He has handled federal grand jury matters before the United States Department of Justice, other federal agencies, and state regulators. He has also participated in internal investigations for various companies. Furthermore, U.S. Attorney Easley has had experience in working on federal criminal matters within the Eastern District of North Carolina, particularly those involving access device fraud, controlled substances and narcotics, environmental laws, identity theft, and immigration laws. His civil practice extends from business and personal injury actions to securities litigation and environmental matters. U.S. Attorney Easley has the depth and breadth of experience in managing large teams of attorneys across multiple offices, as well as in the preparation, defending, and examining expert and lay witnesses in depositions and at trial.
As the top-ranking federal law enforcement official in the Office of the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, U.S. Attorney Michael Francis Easley, Jr. leads and oversees a staff of approximately 119 employees, comprising 58 proficient Assistant United States Attorneys and 61 support personnel. The whole team is devoted to serving the Eastern District of North Carolina residents, who are spread across the 44 easternmost counties in the state. The Office of the United States Attorney handles the prosecution of all federal crimes within the jurisdiction of the Eastern District of North Carolina, with emphasis on matters involving child exploitation, firearms, narcotics, public corruption, and terrorism. In addition, the Office is also in charge of defending the United States in civil cases and is responsible for collecting debts owed to the United States.
Published Writings by Attorney Easley
- Courts Adopt Varying Approaches to Implementing Due Process Protections Act, Subject to Inquiry Blog, April 1, 2021.
- New Due Process Protection Act Amends Criminal Rule 5, May Strengthen Defendants’ Brady Rights, Subject to Inquiry Blog, December 1, 2020.
- Proposed Changes to North Carolina CON Process – February 2012 Update, McGuireWoods Legal Insights, February 6, 2012.
- Committee to Consider Reforming NC Certificate of Need Law, McGuireWoods Legal Insights, September 15, 2011.
- Tar Heel Biotech: The Policies, Trends, and Investments That Continue to Promote Growth in North Carolina’s Biotechnology Sector, Fierce Biotech, April 2011.
- Public Perceptions of Negative Campaigning: How different demographic subgroups define campaign negativity, Dept. of Political Science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2007.
- TV Ad Inflation Drives Campaign Spending, North Carolina DataNet No. 38, April 2005.
Contact Details of State’s Attorney Easley
Full Name: Michael Francis Easley, Jr.
District/State: Eastern District of North Carolina
Public e-mail ID: N/A
150 Fayetteville Street
Raleigh, North Carolina 27601
Public Information Officer
Social Media Profiles of Michael Easley
Username: USAO Eastern District of North Carolina
Username: U.S. Attorney Easley
Updated: August 2, 2022