Brianna Portu - Government Investigations/White Collar lawyer - Nixon Peabody LLP

Brianna Portu



Brianna Portu is a litigator and a member of Nixon Peabody’s Government Investigations and White Collar Defense practice group, representing individuals and corporations across multiple industries.

What do you focus on?

I represent individuals and companies through all stages of government investigations, internal investigations, and complex civil and criminal litigation. I advise clients in responding to grand jury subpoenas, HIPAA subpoenas, and civil investigative demands involving various enforcement agencies, including the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney’s Offices, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. I have experience assisting clients in the life sciences and healthcare industries in matters involving the False Claims Act, Anti-Kickback Statute, Stark Law, and the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

What do you see on the horizon?

The current administration has signaled that it will prioritize enforcement in traditional areas, including healthcare and financial fraud, as well as fraud targeting pandemic relief programs, such as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and other Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) programs. Companies should anticipate an uptick in fraud investigations and should be prepared to respond to increased scrutiny from both federal and state regulators and prosecutors.

Representative Experience

  • Representation of a medical device company in defense of an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in connection with alleged violations of the False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute
  • Representation of a national hospice provider in defense of a False Claims Act investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and various U.S. Attorney’s Offices into Medicare billing and hospice eligibility issues
  • Defense of professor in federal lawsuit brought by the U.S. Attorney’s Office involving alleged grant and tax fraud
  • Representation of an advanced materials manufacturer in an investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and U.S. Attorney’s Office over representations made to investors concerning technologies related to COVID-19
  • Representation of a diagnostics company in an investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and U.S. Attorney’s Office over compliance with the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and representations concerning technologies related to COVID-19

Together at last

Boston College Law Magazine | July 12, 2022

This article highlights the pro bono work of Privacy & Technology counsel Ronaldo Rauseo-Ricupero and Government Investigations & White Collar Defense associate Brianna Portu, both of the Boston office, to help a Honduran man’s wife and children reunite with him in the US after helping the man return to the US in 2018 following a 2003 deportation.

Federal prosecutors seek to dismiss charges against MIT professor accused of concealing ties with China

The Boston Globe | January 20, 2022

The following article covers the federal government’s motion to dismiss charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner Rob Fisher, and the team defending Dr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC partner Brian Kelly and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif. In addition, GIWC associates Tom Barnico of Boston and Bobby McManigal of Washington, DC, Chicago Complex Commercial Disputes associate Henry Caldwell, and Boston GIWC paralegal Joelle MarkAnthony have done critical work on this matter.

US moves to drop case against MIT scientist accused of hiding China links

The New York Times | January 20, 2022

The following article covers the federal government’s motion to dismiss charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner Rob Fisher, and the team defending Dr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC partner Brian Kelly and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif. In addition, GIWC associates Tom Barnico of Boston and Bobby McManigal of Washington, DC, Chicago Complex Commercial Disputes associate Henry Caldwell, and Boston GIWC paralegal Joelle MarkAnthony have done critical work on this matter.

US drops case against MIT professor accused of ties to China

Associated Press | January 20, 2022

The following article covers a federal judge’s dismissal of all charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner Rob Fisher. The team defending Chen also includes Boston GIWC partner Brian Kelly and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif. In addition, GIWC associates Tom Barnico of Boston and Bobby McManigal of Washington, DC, Chicago Complex Commercial Disputes associate Henry Caldwell, and Boston GIWC paralegal Joelle MarkAnthony have done critical work on this matter.

Charges dismissed against MIT professor accused of hiding research ties to China

The Washington Post | January 20, 2022

The following article covers a federal judge’s dismissal of all charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner Rob Fisher. The team defending Chen also includes Boston GIWC partner Brian Kelly and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif. In addition, GIWC associates Tom Barnico of Boston and Bobby McManigal of Washington, DC, Chicago Complex Commercial Disputes associate Henry Caldwell, and Boston GIWC paralegal Joelle MarkAnthony have done critical work on this matter.

MIT professor defeats China-ties case as feds reverse course

Law360 | January 20, 2022

The following article covers a federal judge’s dismissal of all charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner Rob Fisher. The team defending Chen also includes Boston GIWC partner Brian Kelly and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif. In addition, GIWC associates Tom Barnico of Boston and Bobby McManigal of Washington, DC, Chicago Complex Commercial Disputes associate Henry Caldwell, and Boston GIWC paralegal Joelle MarkAnthony have done critical work on this matter.

US drops case against MIT professor accused of hiding China ties

The Wall Street Journal | January 20, 2022

The following article covers a federal judge’s dismissal of all charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner Rob Fisher. The team defending Chen also includes Boston GIWC partner Brian Kelly and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif. In addition, GIWC associates Tom Barnico of Boston and Bobby McManigal of Washington, DC, Chicago Complex Commercial Disputes associate Henry Caldwell, and Boston GIWC paralegal Joelle MarkAnthony have done critical work on this matter.

US to end case against Gang Chen, MIT scientist accused of hiding ties to China

South China Morning Post | January 15, 2022

The following article covers reports that federal prosecutors have recommended dropping criminal charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partners Brian Kelly and Rob Fisher, and the team defending Mr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif.

U.S. prosecutors recommend dropping China charges against MIT professor: source

Reuters | January 14, 2022

The following article covers reports that federal prosecutors have recommended dropping criminal charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partners Brian Kelly and Rob Fisher, and the team defending Mr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif.

Feds recommend dropping MIT Professor's China ties case

Law360 | January 14, 2022

The following article covers reports that federal prosecutors have recommended dropping criminal charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partners Brian Kelly and Rob Fisher, and the team defending Mr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif.

In high-profile case against MIT's Gang Chen, prosecutors seeking to drop charges

The Washington Post | January 14, 2022

The following article covers reports that federal prosecutors have recommended dropping criminal charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partners Brian Kelly and Rob Fisher, and the team defending Mr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif.

Prosecutors recommend dropping case over china ties against MIT scientist

The Wall Street Journal | January 14, 2022

The following article covers reports that federal prosecutors have recommended dropping criminal charges against MIT professor and NP client Gang Chen related to his China ties. The stories quote Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partners Brian Kelly and Rob Fisher, and the team defending Mr. Chen also includes Boston GIWC associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif.

Indicted MIT professor wants feds sanctioned for press remarks

Law360 | February 04, 2021

This article covers a motion to sanction the Boston U.S. Attorney for making misleading statements to the press, in violation of local rules, in the case of an MIT professor facing fraud charges for not disclosing information from various entities in China when applying for a Department of Energy grant. The story mentions Boston partners Rob Fisher and Brian Kelly, and associates Brianna Nassif and Scott Seitz, all of the Government Investigations & White Collar Defense group, for representing the MIT professor.

MIT Profs Back Colleague Facing 'Flawed' Fraud Charges

Law360 | January 22, 2021

This article covers a letter signed by more than 100 MIT faculty members in support of MIT professor Gang Chen, who faces fraud charges for not disclosing information from various entities in China when applying for a U.S. Department of Energy grant. The letter calls the investigation of Prof. Chen “deeply flawed“ with &ldquomisleading“ assertions in the charges. The article mentions Boston Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partners Rob Fisher and Brian Kelly, and associates Scott Seitz and Brianna Nassif for representing Prof. Chen.

Contact

Brianna N. Portu

Associate

Boston

Phone: 617-345-1084


Boston College, B.A., cum laude

Boston College Law School, J.D., cum laude

Massachusetts

U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit

  • Representation of a deportee in precedent-setting post-deportation merits hearing in Immigration Court in Oakdale, LA, and representation of his immediate family members in petitions for immigrant visas through the U.S. Department of State and National Visa Center. The firm was awarded with Boston College Center for Human Rights and International Justice’s inaugural “Human Rights in Action Award” for our work on the case
  • Representation of a victim of domestic violence in defensive asylum litigation in Immigration Court in Boston, MA, and before the Board of Immigration Appeals
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