Eli R. Greenstein


  • University of San Diego
    B. A., Business Administration 1997, Recipient of the Presidential Scholarship
  • Santa Clara University, Leavey School of Business
    M.B.A. 2002
  • Santa Clara University School of Law
    J.D. 2001, Judicial Extern for the Honorable James Ware (Ret.), former Chief Judge of the Northern District of California.
  • California
  • USDC, Northern District of Illinois
  • USDC, Southern District of New York
  • USDC, Western District of North Carolina
  • USDC, District of Nevada

Eli R. Greenstein is managing partner of Kessler Topaz’s San Francisco office and a member of the Firm’s federal securities litigation practice group.  For over a decade, Eli has been involved in dozens of high-profile securities fraud actions and precedential decisions at both the district and appellate level.  Eli’s cases have resulted in more than $1 billion in recoveries for clients and investors in state and federal proceedings.

Given Eli’s extensive experience prosecuting federal securities actions, clients often turn to him to develop and implement large-scale litigation strategies, draft complex legal briefing on nuanced areas of the federal securities laws and lead large teams of attorneys in prosecuting a wide variety of white collar fraud.  As the Honorable James Ware (Ret.), Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, remarked: “Eli is an advocate….His powerful presentation skills mirror a sharp intellect and a strong character for honesty and justice.  [Eli] strives for a legal and just result, and consistently produces excellent work product.  He also possesses a broad interest and concern for the compelling issues facing our society.” 

Eli’s precedent-setting cases span multiple districts and circuits, including In re VeriFone Holdings, Inc. Sec. Litig., 704 F.3d 694 (9th Cir. 2012) which solidified “willful blindness” as an adequate basis for alleging scienter under §10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934; and Nieman v. Duke Energy Corp., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 110693 (W.D.N.C. 2013), the largest federal securities recovery in North Carolina history and one of the top five securities fraud settlements in the 4th Circuit (which includes North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and South Carolina). 

In 2015-2016 alone, Eli’s cases resulted in more than $370 million in recoveries for investors, including In re HP Secs. Litig., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168292 (N.D. Cal.) ($100 million); Nieman v. Duke Energy Corp., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 110693 (W.D.N.C.) ($146.25 million); In re MGM Mirage Secs. Litig., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 165486 (D. Nev.) ($75 million) and Dobina v. Weatherford Int'l, 909 F. Supp. 2d 228 (S.D.N.Y.) ($52.5 million). Eli also currently serves as lead counsel in several high-profile securities fraud actions, including In re Allergan, Inc. Proxy Violation Securities Litigation, Case No. 14-cv-2004 (C.D. Cal.) a securities action involving an alleged insider trading and warehousing scheme by billionaire hedge fund manager Bill Ackman and Valeant Pharmaceuticals Int’l, Inc.; and Washtenaw Cty. Emps.’ Ret. Syst., et al. v. Walgreen Co. et al., No. 1:15-cv-03187 (N.D.Ill.), a securities fraud action involving alleged misrepresentations and omissions relating to Walgreens’ pharmacy business in conjunction with its eventual business combination with Alliance Boots in 2014.  

Representative Outcomes
  • Represented individual and institutional investors in a federal securities action against Duke Energy, Inc. (Duke) and certain of its executives arising from Duke’s 2012 merger with Progress Energy and the subsequent ouster of Duke’s new CEO.

    The pending $146.25 million settlement is the largest federal securities recovery in North Carolina history and one of the top five securities fraud recoveries in the 4th Circuit. 

  • Represented Danish mutual fund manager Danske Invest A/S and Westmoreland County Employees’ Retirement System as co-lead counsel in an class action alleging that Medtronic and its senior officers failed to disclose the company’s reliance on illegal “off-label” marketing techniques to drive sales of its INFUSE Bone Graft medical device.

    As a result of the illegal marketing practices, Medtronic became the target of a federal government investigation. Stock prices plummeted when Medtronic’s CEO reported that the company had received a U.S. Department of Justice subpoena, significantly impacting the value of the plaintiff’s stock. After hard-fought discovery and class certification battles, Medtronic agreed to pay shareholders $85 million. 

  • Kessler Topaz represented the Iowa Public Employees Retirement System as Co-Lead Counsel in a certified class action challenging a brazen insider trading scheme by Valeant Pharmaceuticals to tip Bill Ackman’s hedge fund Pershing Square Capital (“Pershing”) that it intended to launch a hostile takeover attempt to buy rival pharma company Allergan. The case was brought on behalf of Allergan investors who sold stock while Pershing was buying on the basis of this inside information. After three years, Kessler Topaz settled the case just weeks before trial (set for January 2018) for $250 million. At the final approval hearing, U.S. District Judge David O. Carter commented as follows about the litigation and the efforts of plaintiffs’ counsel: “Let me just humbly say, it’s been quite a walk. It has been an extraordinary unique case and extraordinarily well litigated.”


Bar Association of San Francisco

California Bar Association

American Bar Association