Professional Biography

John K. Roche Partner



John Roche is a member of the firm’s Commercial Litigation practice and the Privacy & Security Law practice. He focuses his practice on commercial litigation and counseling, particularly in the areas of privacy, security, internet and communications law.

Commercial Litigation

John has tried numerous cases in addition to briefing and arguing appeals in state and federal courts and handling matters before various arbitration authorities. He routinely briefs and argues matters involving electronic surveillance issues on behalf of communications providers, and has litigated numerous matters involving novel issues under the First and Fourth Amendments. He was on the trial team for the nation’s first federal jury trial regarding unsolicited commercial email, briefed the nation’s first successful motion to quash a search warrant brought by a communications provider in state court, and likewise briefed and argued the nation’s first motion to quash a search warrant ever brought by a communications provider in federal court (the warrant was subsequently withdrawn).

Cases in which John has been involved include:

  • Davison v. Twitter, Inc., 370 F. Supp. 3d 621 (E.D. Va. 2019) (dismissing First Amendment claims against service provider due to lack of standing or state action), affirmed by 774 Fed. Appx. 162 (4th Cir. 2019)

  • Facebook, Inc. v. Wint, 199 A.3d 625 (D.C. 2019) (criminal defendant cannot obtain communications content from a service provider under the Stored Communications Act)

  • Kline v. Facebook, Inc., No. 150022/2018, 2019 WL 185767 (N.Y. Co. Sup. Jan. 10, 2019) (service provider not subject to personal jurisdiction in New York)

  • Ciabattoni v. Teamsters Local 326, No.: N15C-04-059 VLM, 2018 WL 2418388 (Del. Super. May 29, 2018) (First Amendment prevented effort to unmask anonymous Internet user)

  • In re Grand Jury Subpoena Issued to Twitter, Inc., No. 3:17-mc-40-M-BN, 2017 WL 9485553 (N.D. Texas, Nov. 7, 2017), adopted by 2018 WL 2421867 (N.D. Texas, May 3, 2018) (partially quashing grand jury subpoena issued to service provider on First Amendment grounds)
  • In re Grand Jury Subpoena Issued to Twitter, Inc., No. 3:17-mc-40-M-BN, 2017 WL 9287146 (N.D. Texas, Sept. 22, 2017), adopted by 2017 WL 9287147 (N.D. Texas, Oct. 19, 2017) (vacating gag order issued to service provider on statutory and First Amendment grounds)
  • In re Facebook, Inc. v. United States of America, Nos. 17-SS-388, 17-SS-389, 17-SS-390 (D.C. Court of Appeals, 2017) (successful appeal of order denying motion to vacate gag order related to search warrants in investigation of inauguration day riots in District of Columbia)
  • Bennett v. Google Inc., No. 1:16-cv-02283 (TFH), 2017 WL 2692607 (D.D.C. June 21, 2017) (granting motion to dismiss defamation claim under the Communications Decency Act), affirmed by 882 F.3d 1163 (D.C. Cir. 2018)
  • Beyond Systems, Inc. v. Kraft Foods, Inc., 972 F. Supp. 2d 748 (D. Md. 2013) (after 2-week advisory jury trial, granting client’s motion for summary judgment defeating plaintiff’s $600 million “spam” email claims), affirmed by 777 F.3d 712 (4th Cir. 2015)
  • CTIA - Wireless Ass'n v. Telecommunications Regulatory Bd. of Puerto Rico, 2012 WL 3151377 (D. Puerto Rico 2012) (denying opponent’s motion to dismiss and subsequently granting client’s request for permanent injunction of state law under the Stored Communications Act), affirmed by 752 F.3d 60 (1st Cir. 2014)
  • People v. Harris, 949 N.Y.S.2d 590 (N.Y. City Crim. Ct., 2012) (case of first impression granting in part and denying in part communications provider’s motion to quash subpoena for user records) 
  • CRGT, Inc. v. Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., 2012 WL 3776369 (E.D. Va. 2012) (case of first impression upholding defense contractor’s reliance on Federal Officer Removal Statute) 
  • Dodge v. CDW-Government, Inc., 415 Fed. Appx. 485 (4th Cir. 2011) (victory in breach of contract/employment action) 
  • Qwest Corp. v. Colorado Public Utilities Com'n, 656 F.3d 1093 (10th Cir. 2011) (victory in action under the Telecommunications Act) 
  • Qwest Corp. v. Arizona Corp. Com'n, 567 F.3d 1109 (9th Cir. 2009) (victory in action under the Telecommunications Act) 
  • Jayne v. Sprint PCS, 2009 WL 426117 (E.D. Cal. 2009) (granting client’s motion to dismiss § 1983 claims under the Stored Communications Act) 

Privacy, Security, Internet & Communications Law

John’s practice includes litigation and regulatory compliance counseling with regard to privacy, Internet and communications issues. He helps manage and oversee perhaps the largest subpoena, court order and search warrant compliance program in the country for numerous communications providers (e.g., phone companies, email services, wireless providers, social networks, etc.) regarding issues related to the federal Stored Communications Act, Wiretap Act, Pen-Trap Statute, Telecommunications Act, and Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act.

John is also highly experienced in a host of other areas ranging from Customer Proprietary Network Information (CPNI) to the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (CAN-SPAM) Act, the Communications Decency Act (CDA) and telemarketing laws.

John also has experience assisting clients in their response to computer intrusions and theft of trade secrets, including actions related to the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) and state computer intrusion laws.

John has also represented clients before the FCC, FTC and numerous state commissions in privacy-related investigations and telecommunications matters.

Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS)

John has counseled UAS clients on privacy issues, including the development of UAS privacy policies. He has represented a major UAS client in a successful multi-stakeholder proceeding before the National Telecommunications and Information Administration that resulted in the adoption of voluntary privacy best practices regarding commercial and private UAS use in the national airspace.

Employment Law

John has counseled clients and litigated on their behalf regarding employment related matters, including wage claims, restrictive covenant and trade secret litigation, security policies, and employee privacy issues. These matters include briefing and arguing a successful appeal before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals related to a wage dispute for a major client in Virginia.

Intellectual Property

John has litigated numerous matters on behalf of the world's largest software manufacturer in a comprehensive domestic brand integrity, trademark and copyright litigation effort, involving successful lawsuits in Maryland, Virginia and other jurisdictions against retailers, suppliers, and vendors engaged in the distribution of infringing items.

Pro Bono

John does a great deal of pro bono litigation to assist survivors of domestic violence and is a recipient of the firm’s prestigious Pro Bono Leadership Award for his work on behalf of domestic violence survivors in Virginia state court.

Professional Recognition

  • Listed in Washington D.C. Super Lawyers, 2013 - 2014

Professional Leadership

  • International Association of Privacy Professionals
  • American Bar Association
  • Virginia Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar Association

Community Involvement

  • Virginia Committee for Employer Support of the Guard & Reserve, Ombudsman, 2007 - 2016
  • Legal Services of Northern Virginia, Domestic Violence Project, Volunteer Trial Counsel
  • Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia, Volunteer Trial Counsel
  • Just Neighbors Immigrant Ministry, Volunteer Attorney
  • William & Mary School of Law, Co-Counsel Mentoring Program
  • Blessed Sacrament School, Annual Fund Committee





Bar and Court Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia
  • Maryland
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia


  • William & Mary Law School, J.D., 2004, Notes Editor, William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal
  • Georgetown University, B.A.S., Government, 1999


  • Spanish