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Samuel W. Buell

Bernard M. Fishman Distinguished Professor of Law
School of Law
Duke Law School Room 3186, Duke Box 90362, Durham, NC 27708-0360
Duke Law School 210 Science Dr, Duke Box 90362, Durham, NC 27708


Sam Buell's research and teaching focus on criminal law, corporations, and the regulatory state. He is the author of Capital Offenses:  Business Crime and Punishment in America’s Corporate Age (W.W. Norton & Co. 2016).  His new textbook, Corporate Crime:  An Introduction to the Law and its Enforcement, is available bound at low cost, or free in downloadable form, at

Buell’s scholarship explores the conceptual structure of white collar offenses, the problem of behaviors that evolve to avoid legal control, and the treatment of the corporation and the white collar offender in the criminal justice and regulatory systems. Buell's publications have appeared, among other places, in Texas Law ReviewSouthern California Law ReviewGeorgetown Law JournalLaw & Contemporary ProblemsDuke Law JournalUCLA Law ReviewNYU Law ReviewStanford Law ReviewCardozo Law ReviewIndiana Law Journal, and leading handbooks and encyclopedias. He is a member of the American Law Institute, has testified before the United States Senate and the United States Sentencing Commission on matters involving the definition and punishment of corporate crimes, and has delivered invited lectures in Australia, China, and Taiwan.

Buell joined the Duke Law faculty as a professor in 2010, after serving as an associate professor at Washington University School of Law in St. Louis and a visiting assistant professor at the University of Texas School of Law. Prior to his academic career, he worked as a federal prosecutor in New York, Boston, Washington, and Houston. He twice received the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service, the Department of Justice’s highest honor, and was a lead prosecutor for the Department’s Enron Task Force. Buell clerked for the Honorable Jack B. Weinstein of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York and practiced as an associate with Covington & Burling in Washington, D.C.  He graduated summa cum laude from New York University School of Law and magna cum laude from Brown University.

Current Appointments & Affiliations

Bernard M. Fishman Distinguished Professor of Law · 2015 - Present School of Law
Professor of Law · 2010 - Present School of Law

Education, Training & Certifications

New York University · 1992 J.D.