Scott A. Coffina is a partner at Pietragallo Gordon Alfano Bosick & Raspanti, LLP. He is a relentless problem solver, drawing upon his extensive experience in a wide range of high-level, high-leverage government and law firm positions and dedicating all his energy to guiding clients through whatever difficult challenges they face. Mr. Coffina practices in the areas of white collar criminal defense, internal investigations, False Claims Act matters, compliance, political-legal controversies, health care fraud, higher education, and general crisis management. He is a member of the Government Enforcement, Compliance, & White Collar Litigation, Qui Tam & False Claims Act, and Title IX Practice Groups.
Having previously served as an Assistant United States Attorney, senior deputy chief counsel to Governor Chris Christie, associate counsel to President George W. Bush, staff assistant to President Ronald Reagan, and most recently, as the County Prosecutor of Burlington County, New Jersey, Mr. Coffina brings a 360° approach to clients’ situations, addressing legal implications, and potential collateral consequences, such as reputational harm and impact on the organizational culture. As the Burlington County Prosecutor, he oversaw investigations and prosecutions for all indictable offenses committed in the county, including:
- directing the investigation of members of a street gang responsible for murder and other violent crimes, as well as a Paycheck Protection Plan fraud scheme, and brought charges against them under New Jersey’s racketeering statute.
- supervising the investigation and successful prosecution of three individuals responsible for a fraudulent GoFundMe fundraising scheme that garnered national attention based upon a fake “feel-good” story concocted by the three defendants.
- responding to a dramatic increase in fatal overdoses in Burlington County by resurrecting New Jersey’s rarely used drug-induced-death statute to investigate and charge over thirty drug dealers with first-degree crimes to raise the consequences when their customers died from the drugs they sold them.
- directing the investigation and successful prosecution of a physician who allegedly was indiscriminately prescribing opioids to his patients.
Mr. Coffina was named Prosecutor of the Year in 2022 by the New Jersey Narcotics Enforcement Officers Association for his efforts in prioritizing drug-induced-death investigations, while also initiating several groundbreaking law enforcement initiated drug treatment intervention and diversion programs. He also served as president of the County Prosecutors Association of New Jersey.
As an Assistant United States Attorney, Mr. Coffina led numerous investigations into alleged violations of the False Claims Act, tried several cases to verdict, and twice argued successfully before the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.
In private practice, he has led and/or conducted numerous internal investigations and defended individuals, corporations and colleges and universities in a wide variety of high stakes matters, including:
- Defending a financial institution in a Department of Justice investigation into alleged redlining, negotiating a favorable resolution for the client.
- Developing a compliance program for a New Jersey nonprofit, peer-based recovery program providing interventions and navigation to resources for the treatment of substance use disorders (SUD).
- Conducting an extensive field investigation and defending a Fortune 50 pharmaceutical company in an off-label marketing prosecution by the Department of Justice.
- Conducting investigations on behalf of several major universities into allegations of sexual misconduct.
- Conducting an investigation into embezzlement by an employee of a university, resulting in full recovery of a $5.6 million theft spanning more than a decade and prosecution of the employee.
- Developing a “Claims Integrity Program,” conducting an investigation to root out fraud, and pursuing fraud claims in federal court against two cardiologists on behalf of the Diet Drug Settlement Trust.
As Associate Counsel to President George W. Bush, and Senior Deputy Chief Counsel to Governor Chris Christie, Mr. Coffina represented the interests of the Executive in legislative oversight investigations, legislative and public policy issues, judicial selection, litigation, and political-legal controversies. In the White House, Mr. Coffina advised the Office of Political Affairs, the same Office in which he served as a staff assistant under President Ronald Reagan.
Mr. Coffina has authored articles on various subjects, ranging from internal investigations, privilege issues, political corruption, police reform, and constitutional issues. He has also presented to professional organizations on these subjects and appeared as a guest on local and national television and radio talk shows. He was previously an Adjunct Professor at Rowan University, where he taught Constitutional Law.
Active in several community organizations, he currently serves as an Honorary Commander for the 2nd Air Refueling Squadron at Joint Base MDL, he’s on the Leadership Council for Maryville Addiction Treatment Center, on the Board of Directors of Prevention Plus of Burlington County, and on the Advisory Committee for Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Southern New Jersey.
Mr. Coffina graduated from Cornell University with a B.A. in Government and earned his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.