Elliot Sol Abrams
Phone: (919) 833-3114
Elliot cares deeply about his clients, stands up for them in and out of court, and enforces their rights.
Elliot Sol Abrams is a partner at Cheshire Parker Schneider who represents individuals in high-stakes cases. A substantial portion of Elliot’s practice involves white-collar criminal defense, asset forfeiture defense, and defending licensed professionals facing disciplinary actions. Elliot also handles select civil matters, such as civil rights cases, and other proceedings, including NCAA Infractions cases and government ethics investigations.
Elliot received this year's Public Justice Trial Lawyer of the Year Award for his work securing a $75 million verdict for two wrongly convicted men in a federal civil rights trial. He has been inducted into the Business North Carolina Legal Elite Hall of Fame for Criminal Defense, has consistently been selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America and North Carolina Super Lawyers, and was a featured Attorney of the Month for Attorney at Law Magazine.
Elliot co-authored the Federal Criminal Practice Chapter of the North Carolina Bar Association’s General Practitioner’s Guide to Criminal Law (2016), is a former President of the Federal Bar Association Eastern District of North Carolina Chapter, won a unanimous en banc decision by the Fourth Circuit related to asset forfeiture (Lawyers Weekly article, opinion), has written numerous articles for the national criminal defense publication, The Champion, and has lectured for attorney organizations and civic groups on a wide array of topics including asset forfeiture and high-tech government surveillance techniques.
Elliot has represented people from all walks of life including, among many other folks: two members of the North Carolina House of Representatives; numerous multi-million-dollar corporations; a Superior Court Judge; members of the United States Army Special Forces, as well as other military and law enforcement officers; a former gubernatorial candidate; the chairman of a county school board; multiple corporate officers; and numerous bankers, doctors, lawyers, accountants and real estate agents. He also defeated allegations against his client in the long-running NCAA infractions case against the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and represented a former head ACC men's basketball coach before the NCAA.
In criminal matters, Elliot has won not guilty verdicts in both federal and state trials, including in two homicide cases, and has helped clients avoid charges, obtain dismissals, and defend against a wide array of alleged offenses, including conspiracy, bribery, bank fraud, healthcare fraud, mail and wire fraud, tax evasion, money laundering, antitrust, obstruction of justice, and violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), as well as drug offenses, gun charges, sexual assaults, and murder. He has also won two Motions to Suppress high-tech government surveillance in separate large-scale joint federal and state investigations, and has won new trials for three federal defendants.
Examples of Elliot’s work on federal forfeiture cases include obtaining the release of over $2 million in seized client assets in a long-running bribery prosecution, convincing the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a longstanding rule that allowed the government to seize citizens’ innocent assets before a criminal conviction, and obtaining the release of over $1 million in assets in a healthcare fraud case.
In civil matters, Elliot won the largest trial verdict ($75 million) in United States history in a wrongful conviction case, and has helped clients in breach of contract and fiduciary duty claims, RICO violations, False Claims Act matters, healthcare program reimbursement demands, and tortious interference with business and unfair trade practices suits.
Elliot has conducted internal investigations responding to government, whistleblower or other allegations of illegal conduct, and has represented clients before various administrative boards and other adjudicative bodies, including the NCAA Committee on Infractions, various government ethics and professional licensing boards, the FDIC’s enforcement division, the SEC, the CFTC, and numerous university disciplinary committees.
Elliot earned his law degree at Georgetown University, where he was a member of the moot court team and won best brief in a regional competition. He was also the Treasurer for Habitat for Humanity. During law school, he worked with Joe Cheshire to prepare and try a four-week first degree murder trial that ended with a not guilty verdict. Elliot obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was selected to the Phi Beta Kappa honor society and graduated in the top 3 percent of his class. In high school, he was a captain of both the varsity wrestling and varsity lacrosse teams and a letterman in varsity soccer. He has also competed on a blue marlin tournament fishing team that won the Governor’s Cup (a competition between fishing teams in North Carolina and South Carolina).
*Note that the specific cases referenced above and below do not represent all of the cases Cheshire Parker Schneider has handled, and that past results do not guarantee similar outcomes in future cases. Every case is unique.
- Obtained a $75 million verdict in federal civil rights case for two wrongly convicted men (Washington Post, NY Times, News & Observer).
- Won not guilty verdict in first degree murder trial in which the FBI was the lead investigative agency.
- Obtained dismissal of a 101-count federal indictment of a health care professional related to prescription fraud.
- Obtained dismissal of a federal indictment in a money laundering prosecution.
- Successfully avoided prosecution or civil penalties of a physician being investigated for False Claims Act violations exceeding $20 million.
- Won unanimous en banc opinion by the United States Court of Appeal for the Fourth Circuit in United States v. Chamberlain, 16-4314 (2017) (Lawyers Weekly Article).
- Obtained the release of over $2 million in seized assets in a long-running federal bribery prosecution.
- Defeated NCAA infraction allegations in the long-running NCAA infractions case against the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (NCAA.org).
- Obtained dismissal of an FDIC enforcement action against a national bank officer.
- Successfully avoided prosecution of an officer of a national bank in a bank fraud investigation.
- Successfully avoided prosecution of a doctor facing a multi-million-dollar healthcare fraud investigation.
- Won a Motion to Suppress GPS Tracking in a large-scale joint federal and state investigation.
- Won a Motion to Suppress a Wiretap in a separate large-scale joint federal and state investigation, and obtained a dismissal of the case by the government as a result.
- Won new trial motions in three separate federal criminal prosecutions.