Michael Cristalli


Michael Cristalli is an accomplished trial attorney, representing clients in catastrophic injury, complex criminal, corporate, and civil litigation matters.

He has successfully litigated some of the most high profile cases in the State of Nevada, representing clients nationwide and internationally. He is regarded as one of the premier trial attorneys in Nevada.

Representative Cases:

  • Successfully obtained millions of dollars in awards for his seriously injured clients.
  • Provided legal representation resulting in substantial monetary awards for multiple plaintiffs in 1983 civil rights matters.
  • Successfully defended Sandy Murphy in the nationally covered 2004 re-trial accusing Murphy of murdering casino heir Ted Binion.
  • Recognized before the Nevada courts as death-qualified to provide representation in capital murder cases; none of his five death cases resulted in death sentences.
  • Successfully preserved a defendant’s Sixth Amendment Right to Counsel in State v. Ryan. This case is currently the recognized holding dealing with conflict waivers in the State of Nevada, and relied upon by Nevada courts.

Before joining the firm, Mr. Cristalli was a shareholder at Gordon Silver and partner of Law Office of Michael V. Cristalli. While attending law school, he served a clerkship with the New York Supreme Court, and the New York Court of Appeals. After moving to Las Vegas in 1995, he was a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Judge Bonaventure (1995-96) and a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Judge Douglas (1996-96).


Mr. Cristalli created and starred in a documentary called The Defenders, which highlighted his practice. The documentary was developed into a CBS network drama also titled The Defenders starring Jim Belushi and Jerry O’Connell. Mr. Cristalli served as an executive consultant on the show and consulted extensively on scripts in collaboration with the writers. Mr. Cristalli has made multiple guest appearances on national and local television shows. He is a legal analyst for MSNBC, and has been interviewed on Larry King Live, Greta Van Susteren, and Good Morning America, as well as Fox and Friends in the Morning. His cases have been featured on Dateline NBC, CBS 48 Hours, Lifetime, and Snapped. He previously hosted the Real Defenders radio show on CBS radio, and currently hosts the Legal Hour at KDAWN radio.


  • The Travel Joint, On the Stand with Attorney Michael Cristalli, November 5, 2013
  • The Travel Joint, Marijuana Federal vs. State, November 18, 2013

In the News

Practice Areas

  • Business Litigation
  • Cannabis Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • Defective Pharmaceutical Drugs
  • Federal Criminal Defense
  • Fraud
  • Government Affairs
  • Government Investigation
  • Plaintiff Personal Injury
  • Product Liability
  • State Criminal Defense
  • White Collar Defense
  • Wrongful Death


  • Member, American Bar Association Trial Lawyer Section
  • Member, Multi Million Dollar Advocate Forum
  • Member, Nevada Attorneys for Criminal Justice
  • Member, First Amendment Lawyers' Association
  • Member, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Member, Augustus Society
  • Member, La Voce
  • Board of Directors, The Voice of Las Vegas' Italian-American Community, Board of Directors
  • Honorary Consul, Republic of Italy for the State of Nevada