Law / Courts Negotiation Role-Play:

United States v. Dunlop

Dan Vogel, under the supervision of Robert Bordone
Four-person, three-issue, two-round between U.S. prosecutors, an executive charged with securities fraud, and defense counsel over the terms of a possible plea bargain; attorney-client interviews are followed by a plea bargain negotiation

Please note: you must order multiple copies in order to run this simulation. You should order a copy for every person participating in the simulation.

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SCENARIO:

This case is a two-part negotiation involving four parties: a U.S. Attorney, an Assistant U.S. Attorney, a white-collar criminal defense attorney, and a white-collar criminal defendant. The first part of the case involves client interviews: the defense attorney interviews defendant Allen Dunlop, and the Assistant U.S. Attorney interviews the U.S. Attorney to determine their interests and how to represent them. The second part of the case involves a negotiation between the Assistant U.S. Attorney and the defense attorney about the fate of the defendant. An optional third part of the case may be used, in which the Assistant U.S. Attorney and the defense attorney brief their clients on the outcomes.

The case is a negotiation of a plea bargain agreement for a defendant accused of securities fraud. Specifically, the defendant is accused of violating Federal Securities Laws by employing manipulative and deceptive business practices to make his company’s stock (“Moonbeam, Inc.”) look more attractive to investors. The main issues to be decided in plea bargain negotiations are: what if any prison time will the defendant serve and in what type of facility, how much of a fine will he have to pay and to whom shall he pay the fine, and whether or not the defendant will have to accept a bar on serving as an officer or director of a public corporation in the future, and for how long will such a bar be effective. In addition to resolving these issues, both sides must deal with the tension between their own interests, the interests of the other side, and the interests of their clients.

 

MAJOR LESSONS:

  • This case involves attorney-client interaction. The participants playing the role of Assistant U.S. Attorney and defense attorney have to give their clients a thorough interview and gain their clients’ trust in order to successfully determine their interests. On the other side, the U.S. Attorney and the defendant must decide how much information to give their attorneys so that they negotiate the best outcome.
  • This case also involves principal-agent tension. The Assistant U.S. Attorney and defense attorney must reconcile the tension between their clients’ interests, their own interests, and the best interest of society.
  • The case illustrates relationship building. A successful outcome will account for the fact that the U.S. Attorney, the Assistant U.S. Attorney, and defense attorney will have to work together again frequently in the future.
  • The case provides many opportunities for value creation. Participants should find several options and combinations of agreements that can benefit both sides of the negotiation.

 

TEACHING MATERIALS:

Participant materials include:

  • Confidential Instructions for Defendant Allen Dunlop
  • Confidential Instructions for Dunlop’s Attorney
  • Confidential Instructions for Assistant U.S. Attorney Janet Lee
  • Confidential Instructions for U.S. Attorney Mitch Rubin

 

Teacher’s package includes:

  • All of the above
  • Teaching note

 

United States v. Dunlop Attributes

Time required:
2-3 hours
Number of participants:
4
Teams involved:
Yes
Agent present:
Lawyer
Neutral third party present:
None
Scoreable:
No
Teaching notes available:
Yes

PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center

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Soft copy vs. hard copy

You may order this role simulation in either soft copy (electronic) or hard copy (paper) format. If you select the soft copy option, you will receive an e-mail with a URL (website address) from which you may download an electronic file in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. You will have one week to download your materials from when you receive the email. You are then only authorized to use, print, or share the materials as many times as the number of copies you purchase. The TNRC charges for use of this simulation on a per-participant basis. Therefore, you must purchase a separate copy of this simulation for each person who will be participating, regardless of the number of roles in the simulation. You will only receive a link to one electronic file, which includes all general instructions, confidential instructions, and any teaching notes for the simulation. You should separate out the instructions before distributing to participants.

If you select the hard copy option, you will receive paper copies of this role simulation via the shipping method you select.

For additional information about the soft copy option, please visit our FAQ section, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at tnrc@law.harvard.edu or 800-258-4406 (within the U.S.) or 301-528-2676 (outside the U.S.).

Please note: At the present time, Teaching Negotiation Resource Center soft copies are compatible with the following versions of the Adobe Acrobat Reader: English, German, French, Spanish, Swedish, Portuguese, Japanese, and Korean. If you have a different version of the Acrobat Reader, you may wish to download one of these at http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at tnrc@law.harvard.edu, 800-258-4406 (within the U.S.), or 301-528-2676 (outside the U.S.) for further assistance. This restriction does not apply to the freely available Teacher’s Package Review Copies.

Ordering a single copy for review

If you wish to review the materials for a particular role simulation to decide whether you’d like to use it, a PDF, or soft copy, version of the Teacher’s Package for the simulation is available as a free download from the description page of most role simulations and case studies. All Teacher’s Packages include copies of all participant materials. In addition, some Teacher’s Packages (but not all) include additional teaching materials such as teaching notes or overhead masters.

Ordering copies for multiple participants

To order multiple copies of a role simulation for use in a course or workshop, simply enter the total number of participants in the box next to “Quantity.” There is no need to calculate how many of each role is required.

If you are ordering hard copies, the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center will calculate the appropriate numbers of each role to provide, based on the total number of participants. For example, if you wish to order a 2-party role simulation for use with a class of 30 students, you would enter “30” in the box next to “Quantity.” You then would receive 15 copies of one role and 15 copies of the other role, for use with your 30 participants. As another example, if you ordered 30 participant copies of a 6-party role simulation, you would receive 5 copies of each role.

In the event that the number of participant copies you order is not evenly divisible by the number of roles in the simulation, you will receive extra copies of one or more roles. Participants receiving the extra roles may partner with other participants playing the same role, thus negotiating as a team. So, for instance, if you ordered 31 copies of a 2-party role simulation, you would receive 15 copies of the first role and 16 copies of the second role. One of the participants playing the second role would partner with another participant playing that same role, and the two would negotiate as a team.