Kent Schaffer brings over 30 years of criminal law practice to his clients in Houston, throughout the state of Texas, and across the nation. A graduate of the University of Texas, Kent began his legal career as an investigator for the legendary criminal defense lawyer, Richard "Racehorse" Haynes. After spending three years as chief investigator, Kent began attending the University of Houston, Bates College of Law, graduating in 1981. He is licensed in Texas and the District of Columbia, and has been admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, several United States Circuit Courts of Appeals, and all federal districts in the State of Texas. Kent is one of the first lawyers in the country to handle a federal prosecution involving PPP fraud.
Some of Kent's honors and awards include: Texas SuperLawyer,a Thomson Reuters Service, 2008 - present, , 2007 - present, Best Lawyers in America, by Woodward White, Inc., 2003 - Present, and Best Criminal Defense Lawyer in Houston (Houston Press, 1995). He is also AV Rated by Martindale Hubbell and is rated Superb, by Avvo.
Throughout the years, Kent has represented people from all walks of life, including noted individuals in noted cases. His clients have included: political and business figures such as former Houston Mayor Fred Hofheinz; U.S. Congressman Craig Washington; Robert Allen Stanford; Oscar Wyatt; Wendell Nielsen (President of the FLDS Church); Kevin Hannon (Enron); Yank Barry (Vitapro Company), and James Prince (CEO and Founder of Rap A Lot Records). He has also handled a variety of legal and business matters for entertainers and athletes such as Farrah Fawcett; Tom Sizemore; Chace Crawford; Armie Hammer; Stayve Thomas (Slim Thug); Brad Jordan (Scarface); Chad Butler (Pimp C); Barry Blaustein (Writer/Director); Clifford Irving (Author); Ken Caminiti (MLB); Tony Norris (NFL/Wrestler); and Dante Hall (NFL).
In addition to the individuals that Kent has represented throughout the years, he has also represented and advised a number of major corporations in business and environmental matters, as well as in regulatory and investigatory matters. Among them are the McGraw Hill Companies, Martin Preferred Foods, Harmon and Reimer, Lone Star Concrete, Lucas Aerospace, Hanson North America, Pioneer Concrete, and the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana.
Kent has been active in a number of bar associations throughout his career. He is a Past President of the Harris County Bar Association, Past President of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, a 12 year member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and is a member of the American Bar Association (Criminal Justice Section), the American Board of Criminal Lawyers, the Houston Bar Association, and a former member of the Federal Court Advisory Council for the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas. In 2011, he was appointed by the Harris County Commissioners Court to the Board of Directors of the Harris County Public Defender's Office.
Kent has also appeared in the media and on numerous news programs to provide legal commentary and analysis. He has appeared on every local network, and numerous national programs, including: Current Affair, American Journal, Inside Edition, America's Most Wanted, Final Justice, City Under Siege, CNN's Burden of Proof, Cochran & Company, Rivera Live, Internight, Court TV, and has been a regular commentator on CNBC'S Power Lunch.Kent is a frequent lecturer and has spoken on topics involving criminal law at law schools and bar associations throughout the country; including the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, the State Bar of Texas, the Houston Bar Association, the Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association, NORML, the Practicing Law Institute, and the Law Education Institute. Topics he has spoken on include, Representing Companies & Individuals in Parallel Investigations; White Collar Crime Prosecutions; Advanced Cross Examination Techniques; Pre-Trial Investigation; Handling the Government Informant; Making an Effective Opening and Closing Arguments That Work; When Criminal Law and Family Law Collide, Preparing to Cross Examine; and Picking Juries to Acquit.
Areas Of Practice
- White Collar Crime
- Criminal Law
- Health Care Fraud
- Bank Fraud
- Government Contract Fraud
- State and Federal Courts
- Internal Investigation
- PPP Fraud
- PPP Fraud Investigations
- District of Columbia
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court Northern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court Western District of Texas
- Bates College of Law University of Houston, Houston, Texas
- University of Texas
Honors and Awards
- Texas SuperLawyer
- AV Rated by Martindale Hubbell
- Lawyer of the year- 2017, Criminal Defense: White Collar, Best Lawyers, Woodward White, Inc.
Professional Associations and Memberships
- Harris County Bar Association, Past President
- Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Past President
- Board of Directors of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Member
- American Bar Association, Member, Criminal Justice Section
- American Board of Criminal Lawyers
- Houston Bar Association