“Dwyer ranks among a tiny cadre of the city’s super criminal defense lawyers”
-The Boston Globe
Thomas E. Dwyer, Jr. is recognized as one of the region’s preeminent litigators in the field of white-collar criminal defense. He also has a broad civil litigation practice, including state, federal and multidistrict litigation. Tom has tried many of the most complex state and federal criminal matters in this and other jurisdictions. Less publicly, he has been a vigorous advocate for clients in keeping them out of the spotlight and convincing prosecutors that an indictment is not warranted. Tom is also a trained mediator.
Tom defends domestic and foreign corporations and their senior executives in criminal, civil, and regulatory investigations and complex civil litigation. He advises clients in matters ranging from health care fraud, securities fraud, mail fraud, and defense procurement fraud to foreign corrupt practices investigations and environmental fraud matters.
After eight years of white-collar criminal defense success, Tom founded and built his former firm, Dwyer & Collora LLP (now Collora LLP) into one of the most successful litigation boutiques in the Northeast. He served as the President of the Boston Bar Association from 1999-2000, and is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.
The Boston Globe described Tom as “A man whose focused perseverance and legal savvy have become the stuff of near legend.” Tom was named one of the top 35 influential judges and lawyers of the past 35 years by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, and is frequently ranked by prestigious legal publications, including Best Lawyers in America, and Massachusetts Super Lawyers.
Tom has always been an innovator in developing new theories in litigation strategy which have gone on to become standard practice. Throughout his career in white collar criminal law, he has been instrumental in developing pre-trial and trial motion strategies, forming the early parameters of aggressive confrontation of facts and legal theories during the grand jury investigative phase, and using psychological resources in sentencing.
His experience includes:
Representing clients in white collar criminal investigations and, when necessary, litigating cases in state and federal courts.
Defending domestic and foreign corporations and their senior executives in litigation and pre-litigation matters.
Leading civil litigation teams in executing strategies towards problem resolution.
Tom started his career as a Special Assistant District Attorney in Suffolk County, Boston in 1972. Fourteen months later, he was appointed to supervise all white collar, organized crime and political corruption investigations and prosecutions. He tried numerous cases to successful conclusion and supervised the prosecution of hundreds of other cases. Tom’s work was cited by the United State Department of Justice as establishing a national best practices program for white collar crime prevention and prosecution. From 1978 to 1980, he served as the Executive Director and Deputy Chief Counsel of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Special Commission Concerning State and County Buildings (Ward Commission).
Professional and Community Involvement
Massachusetts Bar Association
American Bar Association
Boston Bar Association - President, Boston Bar Association (1999 – 2000)
President-elect, Boston Bar Association (1998 – 1999)
Secretary, Boston Bar Association (1993 – 1994)
Council Member, Boston Bar Association (1991 – 1993)
Member, Boston Bar Association Task Force on Drugs and the Courts (1990 – 1991)
Member, Boston Bar Association State Court Study Committee (1991 – 1992)
Chair, Criminal Justice Act Advisory Board, appointed by Federal District Court Chief Judge Joseph L. Tauro. This board supervises the appointment of defense counsel for indigents and coordinates various defense function issues with the court, including the revision of local rules relating to discovery in criminal cases. (1993 – 1996)
Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers (1986)
Appointed to National Committee for the Courageous Advocacy Award (1993)
Appointed to the Federal Criminal Procedure Committee (1997)
Appointed to Access to Justice and Legal Services Committee (2003)
Appointed to Admission to Fellowship Committee (2001)
Member, National and Massachusetts Criminal Defense Lawyers Associations
Member, Board of Trustees, Greater Boston Legal Services
Founding Member, Board of Trustees, Williams Syndrome Foundation
Public Policy and Community Involvement
Tom Dwyer has been actively involved in public policy since he was a teenager trying to change the voting age to 18. As President of the Boston Bar Association, he was a powerful advocate for legal aid, court reform, and the Suffolk County Business Litigation Session. He was the moving force behind fundraising for the Moakley Federal Courthouse and educational programs at that site. In 2006, he helped established the Dwyer & Collora Foundation in honor of his father, Thomas E. Dwyer, Sr. The Foundation provided financial support to Community Resources for Justice as well as other organizations.
His notable accomplishments include leading or assisting in the following initiatives:
Presently engaged in the effort to recruit attorneys in Greater Boston to assist undocumented children avoid deportation.
Successfully advocating on behalf of the Boston Bar Association to make the statutory changes necessary to increase the number of Appeals Court Justices in order to decrease the backlog of cases.
Successfully advocating on behalf of the Boston Bar Association to increase funding for the Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation.
Successfully advocating for the establishment of the Business Court in Suffolk County
Superior Court to handle complex commercial litigation.
Playing an instrumental role in establishing the Boston Bar Association’s first Summer
Jobs program in 1993.
Helping to start the Annual Walk to the Hill for Civil Legal Aid in 1999 and supporting the program for more than ten years. As Boston Bar Association President, Tom developed a program for hundreds of lawyers to visit legislators supporting additional appropriations for civil legal aid assistance. Each year, hundreds of lawyers participate in this program.
Establishing the first of its kind Federal Court Education Project in 1998, which has provided programs to thousands of school children.
Serving on the Boston Bar Association State Court Study Committee, which played a major role in the Court Reform Legislation signed into law in 1993. Tom’s assistance in crafting legislation led to the creation of a state-wide juvenile court justice system.
Supporting the Massachusetts Citizens Against the Death Penalty Foundation.
Suffolk University Law School (J.D.)
Boston College (B.S., Economics)
Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
United States District Court, District of Massachusetts
United States Court of Appeals, First and Fourth Circuits Supreme Court of the United States
Honors & Awards
New England Super Lawyer, Criminal Defense–White Collar (2004-2015)
“The Power List,” Most Influential Attorneys of Massachusetts, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2009)
Recipient, Public Service Award, Boston Bar Association, for court reform work (1993)
Moderator, “Building a White Collar Criminal Law Practice,” ABA 24 th Annual National Institute on White Collar Crime (2010)
Moderator, “What Every C.P.A. Needs to Know About Civil and Criminal Tax Litigation” (2010)
Panelist, “Cost Pressures on Law Firms and What Can Be Done About them in 2010,” Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (Nov. 13, 2009)
Panelist, Boston Bar Association Criminal Law Section, “Grand Jury Practice” (2009)
Moderator, Health Care Fraud and Abuse Panel: “Welcome to the Field of Health Care Fraud Defense, Where Nothing is Static and ‘Victory’ is Hard to Define,” ABA White Collar Crime Institute (2008)
Chair, Health Care Fraud and Abuse Panel: “Question: To what extent did the 2004 acquittals in the TAP case affect the government’s zeal for investigating and prosecuting health care fraud and abuse matters in 2005? Answer: Not at all,” ABA White Collar Crime Institute (2006)
Panelist, White Collar Crime Prosecutions, 1st Circuit Judicial Conference (2004)
Discussion leader, Asian American Lawyers Association of MA: “Marketing and the Current Legal Climate” (2003)
Panelist, “Doing Business with the Government: Avoiding the Pitfalls,” Boston Bar Association (2001)
“Judge Wolf recusal motion: Meritorious or pre textual?” Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, September 28, 2015
“Informed by U.S. Experience, U.K. Embarks on Major Anti-Fraud Law Initiatives,” Newsletter of the ABA Criminal Justice Section’s White Collar Crime Committee, August 2008
“Massachusetts Election Administration, Campaign Finance and Lobbying Law Chapter 21 – Federal/State Issues,” MCLE 2000
“Massachusetts Election Administration, Campaign Finance and Lobbying Law Chapter 26 – Recent Developments in Federal Law,” MCLE 2000
“Seeking the Extraordinary,” The Suffolk University Law School Alumni Magazine, Spring 1998 Edition
In the News
Dynamics changing on federal bench in Mass., The Boston Globe, February 24, 2014
Tom Dwyer Comments on Conflict of Interest in Criminal Case, The Boston Globe, January 24, 2014
Power lunch: 10 questions for attorney Tom Dwyer, CM Magazine, the Catholic Memorial alumni magazine, April 18, 2012
When the law comes calling, Beacon Hill bigwigs call on Thomas Dwyer — the attorney who wins his cases by not going to court THE MASTER FIXER, The Boston Globe, February 15, 1996
From 1972 to 1978, Tom Dwyer served as a Special Assistant District Attorney focusing on corruption prosecutions.
From 1978 to 1980, he served as Deputy Counsel for a special legislative crime commission focusing on public corruption.
In 1980, he started the firm Dwyer & Murray, which led to his role as the leading partner in the formation of Dwyer & Collora in 1988 – a firm that built a national reputation for White Collar defense.
After 22 years of highly successful practice at Dwyer & Collora, leading the development of the White Collar and litigation boutique from three to twenty-five attorneys, Tom decided to continue his practice in a smaller setting, founding Dwyer LLC. This new litigation boutique, dedicated primarily to White Collar defense and complex civil litigation, has the same focus and determination as Tom’s past ventures.