Manuel J. Retureta

Manuel J. Retureta is a founding partner of Retureta & Wassem, P.L.L.C.  As the firm’s lead trial attorney, he has successfully defended civil litigants in a variety of matters, and defended foreign leaders, corporate executives and others charged with white collar, death penalty, large conspiracy, transnational and other crimes before federal courts throughout the United States, as well as several state/local jurisdictions.

 Throughout his extensive legal career, Mr. Retureta has participated in and assembled diverse trial teams and has served as lead trial attorney in numerous large-scale, multi-defendant criminal cases.

Mr. Retureta has also offered his expertise to numerous media outlets commenting on significant legal matters on camera and in print.  He has taken his legal knowledge and his presence in Washington, D.C. and expanded his legal analysis and commentary to include political analysis as it intersects with legal issues.    

Professional & Community Service

With the District of Columbia as his home, Mr. Retureta has dedicated time and energy to serve the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

He was appointed to serve a two-year term on the Court’s Grievance Committee in early 2016 and as a member of the Court’s committee to investigate and promulgate a local rule regarding government disclosure of exculpatory information in criminal cases in 2015. Recently, Mr. Retureta served on the Merit Selection Panel that considered applicants and recommended a candidate for appointment as a United States Magistrate Judge. Previously, he has served on committees evaluating the reappointment of United States Magistrate Judges and has been a member of the District of Columbia Circuit’s Judicial Conference.

Endeavoring to also serve the greater District of Columbia community, Mr. Retureta has participated in the District of Columbia Courts’ Open House Law Day, and volunteered at Georgetown Law School’s trial advocacy program, as well as programs of the Hispanic Bar Association. Recognizing the importance of ensuring all members of our community have access to legal services, Mr. Retureta dedicates numerous hours to providing pro bono legal assistance annually. In recognition of his service, he has been the recipient of the Unsung Hero Award in Washington, D.C.

Courts & Jurisdictions

Mr. Retureta is a member of the District of Columbia Bar and an active practitioner before the federal judicial districts of the District of Columbia, Maryland, the Eastern District of Virginia, the Southern District of Florida, and the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York.

He is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. Mr. Retureta is also a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Hispanic Bar Association for the District of Columbia, and was a founding member of the Federal American Inn of Court in Washington, D.C.

Personal History

Mr. Retureta was born in Havana, Cuba and raised in Colorado. He was awarded a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California at San Diego and earned his Juris Doctor from the Catholic University of America’s Columbus School of Law in Washington, D.C. Prior to entering private practice, Mr. Retureta clerked for the former Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, the Honorable Walter T. Cox, III.


202 450 6119