Sugarman & Cannon


Scott Sugarman and Chris Cannon founded the law firm of Sugarman and Cannon in 1989. Our practice emphasizes the defense of individuals and businesses suspected of, or charged with, violations of criminal laws and administrative regulations. We represent clients in both the California and Federal courts, before administrative agencies and on appeal.

Scott Sugarman graduated from Stanford Law School in 1975, and then worked for the Washington, D.C. law firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Kampelman. From 1977 to 1980, he was one of the two chief law clerks for the Chief Justice of California, Rose Elizabeth Bird. From 1981 to 1988, he worked as an attorney with the Alameda County Public Defender’s Office.

Chris Cannon graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1976 and Southwestern University Law School, where he was a member of the Law Review, in 1979. Following graduation, Chris clerked for two years for the Hon. William Sweigert, a United States District Judge for the Northern District of California. Chris then worked for the Santa Clara County Public Defender’s Office and after one year left to join the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Northern District of California, where he remained until he established the firm of Sugarman and Cannon.

Sugarman & Cannon have represented a wide variety of clients at trial and on appeal. In many white collar cases, our early participation has been able to convince the authorities not to file charges.

At Trial:

We have secured the acquittal of the president of a failed savings and loan charged with misapplying millions of dollars;
We obtained a probationary term for on of the defendants charged in the largest heroin seizure in the history of the United States;
We obtained a dismissal of all charges against a major stock brokerage firm accused of criminal contempt;
We secured the acquittal of a podiatrist charged with overbilling for medical procedures; and
We have tried several major tax cases, including an acquittal for a former IRS attorney who allegedly cashed several million dollars of settlements checks at a local liquor store and did not report the income to the government. We have also have represented individuals charged with tax and money laundering offenses in Canada, Grand Cayman, Israel, Luxembourg, the British Virgin Islands, Antigua, the Isle of Mann, Germany, England, Switzerland, Hong Kong and other countries. We were also involved in the defense of the first foreign head of State to be tried in the Untied States since Manual Noriega and presently represent other lawyers involved in the operation of tax shelters.

In post judgment proceedings we secured the release of an individual serving a 30-year sentence after pleading guilty to possessing the largest quantity of methamphetamine ever seized in the United States;

We have also obtained multiple reversals of fraud convictions and have had numerous other appellate victories representing clients charged with crimes ranging from white collar offenses to assault on a police officer and murder.

We have also represented:

Numerous brokers charged regulatory offenses and criminal acts;
Many individuals and entities being investigated for or charged with securities law violations, before the SEC, multiple district courts and in the Ninth Circuit;
Individuals and corporations charged with theft of intellectual property, trade secrets and antitrust violations;
Individuals and corporations in debarment proceedings many individuals and corporations accused of a variety of tax law violations;
Individuals charged with FDA, DEA and Customs offenses relating to controlled substances;
Attorneys, Doctors, Educators, Students and law enforcement officer’s accused of criminal conduct and violations of professional standards;
Officers and Managers of businesses accused of government contract fraud;
Numerous individuals in extradition proceedings;
Prisoners seeking international transfers;
Individuals appearing before State and Federal parole boards; and
Individuals and corporations charged with criminal and regulatory violations during elections and related activity.

Contact Us


737 Tehama Street
No. 3
San Francisco, CA 94103






Other Offices

Sugarman & Cannon
385 Grand Avenue
Suite 300
Oakland, California 94610

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