Alessio draws upon his extensive experience in private practice and at the U.S. Departments of Justice and the Treasury to counsel and defend clients in white collar crime and regulatory enforcement matters involving money laundering, sanctions, bribery and corruption, and other financial crimes. Mr. Evangelista also has significant experience advising clients regarding the regulatory and enforcement implications of new business models and technologies impacting the financial services industry, including banking as a service, artificial intelligence, digital identity, blockchain-based digital assets and decentralized finance.
Prior to joining Skadden, Alessio served as head of the Enforcement and Compliance Division at the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), the primary anti-money laundering regulator in the United States. Alessio was the senior executive in charge of all enforcement, compliance and whistleblower program activities at the agency. He supervised and approved all civil enforcement actions, including a $390 million civil penalty against one of the largest banks in the United States for failing to implement and maintain an effective and reasonably designed AML program and failing to file certain suspicious activity reports, and a $100 million civil penalty against one of the oldest and largest convertible virtual currency derivatives exchanges in the world for failing to implement and maintain effective and reasonably designed AML and customer identification programs. Alessio was also a key member of several teams implementing the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020, including teams drafting new rules regarding the beneficial ownership reporting requirements in the Corporate Transparency Act.
Prior to joining FinCEN, Alessio was the second-in-command at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, the largest U.S. Attorney’s Office in the nation, where he also served as prosecutor and supervisor for 12 years. In that role, he created a new Threat Finance Unit and supervised significant money laundering and sanctions investigations involving international financial institutions, multi-national corporations and financial technology companies. Mr. Evangelista also served as deputy chief of the Bank Integrity Unit at the Department of Justice where he supervised over a dozen prosecutors and scores of sanctions and money laundering investigations, including investigations of several large international banks, two of which were resolved when the banks agreed to remediate their compliance programs and pay more than $1 billion in penalties. In all of his roles, he worked with senior officials throughout the U.S. government, including the departments of State, Commerce, Treasury, and the intelligence community, and key state regulators including the New York State Department of Financial Services. Alessio also has significant litigation experience, having tried more than 50 cases to verdict, including 19 jury trials, and argued numerous appeals.
Partner, White Collar Defense & Investigations