Law school symposium to address 'The Legal Impact of the 2022 Russian Invasion of Ukraine'


The “2023 Detroit Mercy Law Review Symposium: Fallout: The Legal Impact of the 2022 Russian Invasion of Ukraine” will take place Friday, March 3, from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, 651 East Jefferson Avenue in Detroit. The symposium will also be livestreamed.

The Detroit Mercy Law Review welcomes scholars, legal professionals, and community leaders from across the country to discuss legal issues related to important current events.

The 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine is a tragic event that has reverberated across the world. Fallout from it impacts a broad variety of legal specialties. While some of these impacts are yet to be fully realized, it is important to begin discussion and analysis of them.

The keynote speaker will be former Assistant U.S. Attorney John Engstrom, a federal prosecutor with more than 25 years of experience prosecuting federal crimes in Detroit. For ten of those years, he specialized in prosecuting public corruption and international organized crime cases. He served as both the Chief of his office’s Organized Crime Unit and Deputy Chief of its Public Corruption Unit. Most recently, for three years, Engstrom prosecuted health care fraud and opioid distribution cases. 

Engstrom also has extensive experience working overseas on behalf of the DOJ. He was first assigned to work overseas as the Resident Legal Advisor at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine, from September, 2010, to September, 2013. During that time, he assisted in drafting and implementing Ukraine’s current Criminal Procedure Code. He also assisted in drafting and implementing laws and regulations bringing Ukraine into compliance with Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”) regulations and lifting Ukraine from FATF’s “blacklist.” After serving in Ukraine, Engstrom worked at the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, Turkey, from September, 2013, to October, 2016. There he focused on offering assistance on counter-terrorism issues, including best practices for the investigation and prosecution of terrorist financing and terrorism offenses, and bilateral sharing of law-enforcement information.

Engstrom returned to the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine in December, 2019, optimistic to work with the Ukraine’s new government on a broad array of legal reform issues, including its anti-corruption reform efforts. John was ordered to return to the U.S. in mid-February, 2022, shortly before Russia doubled down on its illegal military invasion and occupation of Ukrainian territory. Engstrom currently works in the DOJ’s Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development and Training as an attorney advisor on Eurasian affairs. 

Presentations at the symposium will cover issues such as international law, evasion of sanctions using cryptocurrency, legal aspects relating to European reliance on Russian oil, cyberterrorism, and immigration from a variety of angles.

All panel presentations will take place at Detroit Mercy Law, Room 226 and will be available to watch live on Detroit Mercy Law’s homepage at

The symposium schedule is as follows:

• Welcome & Panel 1: International Frames of Reference and Cyberwar (9 to 11 a.m.)

• Panel 2: Repercussions of the Conflict in Culture and Immigration (11:10 a.m. to 12:55 p.m.)

• Keynote Presentation & Lunch: John Engstrom – Ensuring the Integrity of Funds Dedicated Toward the Reconstruction of Post-War Ukraine (1 to 2 p.m. in Atrium)

• Panel 3 & Closing Remarks: Monetary and Political Reprisals: Sanctions, Reparations, and Countermeasures at the UN as Part of The International Community’s Response (2 to 4 p.m.)

• Reception: A reception in the Atrium immediately follows the symposium.

Attendees can register for one or multiple sessions. 

Guests may park at the Detroit Mercy Student/Guest Lot located off Larned St. Limited street parking is also available on Jefferson Ave., Congress St., Larned St., St. Antoine St. The main entrance to the School of Law is located off Larned St.

To register for the symposium, visit cy-law-review-symposium-tickets-4572 37689237. Registration will close Thurs­day, March 2, at 5 p.m.

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