Antony Dutton, a leading disputes partner who had been at Dechert since January 2012, died suddenly in early January.
Dutton, who was 49, became a partner at Dechert after being hired from legacy Norton Rose, where he had served as global head of dispute resolution between 2007 and 2011 and was a member of the partnership council. He is survived by his wife and children.
His high profile arrival at Dechert signalled the firm’s push into the London disputes market, with his move following that of DLA Piper’s global co-head of litigation Neil Gerrard.
Dutton’s specialism in insolvency disputes helped to bring in a case for Standard Chartered Bank after Bahrain’s Arcapita Bank, of which it was a major creditor, entered into Chapter 11 proceedings in New York and for Turkey’s Ithmaar Bank following the collapse of a $90m real estate fund. Ithmaar Bank was a longstanding client of Dutton’s, having instructed him during his time at both Norton Rose, where he held client relationships with HSBC, BNP Paribas and the Royal Bank of Scotland, and Dechert.
Dutton, a graduate of Auckland University, was a member of the International Bar Association and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. Prior to his 21-year stint at Norton Rose, Dutton practiced as a barrister and solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand.
Andrew Levander, chairman at Dechert, told Legal Business: ‘We are deeply saddened at the death of our partner, colleague and friend, Antony Dutton. Antony was a skilled litigator, an advocate for our clients and a generous co-worker. He made extensive contributions to the firm over the last three years and was a very visible figure in both our London and Dubai offices. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.’
Joe Tirado, co-head of international arbitration at Winston & Strawn and a former colleague of Dutton’s during his time at Norton Rose, told Legal Business: ‘Everybody is still taking it in. It’s a very tragic loss for his family, friends, colleagues and the profession. Antony was a very accomplished litigator and professional. He will be greatly missed.’