Catherine Baen is of counsel to the firm. Her practice is focused on defending individuals and corporations accused of criminal violations. She has the experience of handling a wide variety of criminal accusations, having tried more than 100 cases to jury verdicts. Before becoming associated with the firm, Cat was an associate at Bracewell & Patterson (now Bracewell & Guiliani). While there, she worked in the general litigation section where she participated with particular interest in several white-collar criminal cases. Cat left Bracewell to join the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. After four years as a prosecutor, Cat joined the law firm of Williams Bailey. At Williams Bailey, she handled environmental and toxic tort cases involving injuries caused by benzene, asbestos, and tobacco. Cat opened her own practice in 1995, focusing on criminal defense. Cat has particular expertise in defending against alleged violations of federal and state environmental laws.
Representative cases include the following:
- Defending CITGO Petroleum Corporation in the trial of an indictment alleging criminal violations of federal environmental regulations in Corpus Christi.
- Defending an upper-level employee for Huntsman Chemical in a criminal environmental case in the federal court in Beaumont. Cat’s client was not charged.
- Defending employees of Koch Industries (now Flint Hills) in a criminal environmental case in federal court in Corpus Christi. Cat’s clients were not charged.
- Defending employees of Valero in a criminal environmental case in state district court in Houston. Cat’s clients were not charged.
- Defending an individual in a federal mortgage fraud case involving the Small Business Administration (SBA). Cat’s client was not charged.
- Assisting in the assault trial of Texas singer/songwriter Billy Joe Shaver. The jury found Shaver acted in self-defense and acquitted him.
- Representing several accountants in the prosecutions following Enron’s collapse, Cat’s clients were not charged.
- Defending employees of a refinery in a federal investigation concerning environmental (Leak Detection and Repair/”LDAR”) matters in Ohio. Cat’s clients were not charged.
- Defending at trial in federal court an electrical contractor for Beaumont Independent School District charged with fraud. The jury was unable to return a verdict and the client’s case was resolved without jail time.
- Representing a federal district judge accused of sexual misconduct and obstructing justice.
- Defending at trial Houstonian Dr. Michael Brown in the alleged assault of his wife. The jury acquitted Dr. Brown.
- Defending an upper-level employee of a Delaware refinery in a state investigation concerning environmental matters. Cat’s client was not charged.
- Representing a subsidiary of a major airline in a criminal environmental matter in state district court in Houston. The company’s case was resolved without a fine.
- Defending Texas Medical Center employees in a case concerning proper collection and disposal of used oil in state district court.
- Defending commercial seamen investigated for potential federal environmental law violations in connection with the operation of their vessels in various jurisdictions.
- Representing employees of BP in the federal investigation of an explosion in a refinery in Texas City. Cat’s clients were not charged.
- Represented an individual in a federal investigation in Oklahoma regarding hydraulic fracturing or “fracking.” Cat’s client was not charged.
- Defending several individuals charged with war crimes in the United Nations’ International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague, Netherlands.