John Sandweg - Nixon Peabody LOLP

John Sandweg

John Sandweg leads the Cross-Border Risks team focusing on complex international challenges involving issues related to cross-border business, immigration, and national security.

What do you focus on?

As the leader of the Cross-Border Risks team, I focus on complex national security, immigration, and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) compliance matters. I also assist with international criminal matters and independent compliance reviews for individuals and companies in the U.S. and abroad. In this capacity, I advise individuals, businesses, governments, and political leaders on how best to achieve their most important objectives.

I tap into my years of experience in leadership positions with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and DHS to provide my clients with a unique perspective and strategic advice to ensure compliance with cross-border laws and regulations. I also draw on this experience to help individuals and companies to achieve cross-border investment objectives and overcome barriers to market access.

In my role as the Acting Director of ICE, I led approximately 20,000 employees in every state and 47 countries in the agency's mission to enhance public safety and border security through the enforcement of federal border control, customs, trade, and immigration laws. I prioritized ICE’s intellectual property enforcement and cybersecurity efforts and worked to improve statistical transparency regarding immigration enforcement.

As the Acting General Counsel of DHS, I served as the chief legal officer for the Department, advising the Secretary and the Department’s senior leadership on all significant legal, policy, and operational issues. Prior to this role, I served as counselor where I provided strategic advice and counsel on operational and policy direction and was a principal architect of the DHS’s immigration, border security, and law enforcement policy.

‘We desperately need a director’: Cyber advocates sound off as senator delays CISA confirmation

SC Magazine | June 24, 2021

Washington, DC Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner John Sandweg, leader of NP’s Cross-Border Risks team, is quoted in this article covering the delayed confirmation of Jen Easterly to lead the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

Biden's DHS Pick Defends Ethics Record, Promises Morale Boost for Workforce

Government Executive | January 19, 2021

This article on Biden’s pick to lead the U.S. Homeland Security Department quotes Washington, D.C. Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense partner and former acting General Counsel for DHS John Sandweg on how DHS career workers know it’s their job to help the president execute policies, regardless of their political views.

Nixon Peabody snags former DHS official to lead new team

Law360 | September 11, 2019

This article quotes CEO and Managing Partner Andrew Glincher and Washington, D.C., Government Investigations and White Collar Defense partner John Sandweg, discussing John’s arrival at Nixon Peabody to head up the firm’s new cross-border risks team.

Career tracker Lawyers on the move

Reuters Legal | September 09, 2019

This roundup of key personnel moves in the legal industry features the addition of Washington, DC, Government Investigations & White Collar Defense partner John Sandweg and his legal team. They are spearheading NP’s new Cross-Border Risks team.

Nixon Peabody adds ex-ICE director amid white collar swoon

Bloomberg Law | September 04, 2019

This article highlights the arrival of Washington DC Government Investigations and White Collar Defense partner John Sandweg, a former acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

John comes to NP after leading his own boutique firm, Frontier Solutions. He joins NP along with five team members: counsel Rachel Winkler, associate Catherine Ingram Hunstad, legal assistant Tracey Ford, and investigative directors Jerry Robinette and Miguel Unzueta. John and his five colleagues will spearhead our firm’s new Cross-Border Risks team.

This article also quotes Washington DC Government Investigations and White Collar Defense partner Adam Tarosky on current trends in False Claims Act prosecutions.


John Sandweg


Washington, DC

Phone: 202-585-8189

Fax: 877-743-5914

Arizona State University School of Law, J.D.

Arizona State University, B.A.

District of Columbia

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