Pedestrians walk past the Uber Technologies Inc. headquarters building in San Francisco, California, U.S. (Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

Uber Hires Former Justice Department Lawyer as Compliance Chief

(Bloomberg) -- Uber Technologies Inc. named Scott Schools, a former top attorney at the U.S. Justice Department, as chief compliance officer.

The newly created role is designed to help Uber avoid the kinds of scandals and legal scrutiny that enveloped the business last year. The ride-hailing company has faced at least five U.S. criminal inquiries, people familiar with the probes have said.

Until his resignation from the Justice Department last week, Schools was a top adviser to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. His appointment was reported earlier Monday by the Wall Street Journal.

Dara Khosrowshahi, who took over as Uber chief executive officer last year, has made recruiting lawyers with experience in government a priority. Khosrowshahi named Tony West, the former third-ranking official in the Justice Department under President Barack Obama, as chief legal officer.

“Scott lives by the values of transparency, integrity and accountability, and his experience handling some of the most sensitive and complex ethical matters at the United States Justice Department make him exactly the right person to lead Uber’s compliance efforts,” West said in an emailed statement.

Uber has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on legal bills over the years. The San Francisco-based company’s legal problems included a costly trade secrets lawsuit, which it settled last year, and courtroom battles with drivers over their employment status.

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