Los Angeles Criminal and DUI Defense Firm

Firm Overview


Choosing an attorney to help you or a loved one fight current or pending criminal or DUI charges is a frightening task. With hundreds of attorney's out there to choose from, how do you know who is the right fit for you? At the Los Angeles Criminal and DUI Defense Firm, we have determined that the most satisfied clients are those who view their attorney's as experienced, effective and trustworthy.

Our firms combined 25 years of experience, our client-centric and individualized approach to effectively handling cases, and the trustworthy relationships we build with our clients has earned us a reputation as one of the top criminal and DUI defense law firms throughout Los Angeles County and Southern California.


The attorney's at the Los Angeles Criminal and DUI Defense Firm have 25 years of combined experience practicing law. Our law firm is exclusive to the practice of criminal and DUI defense work and our attorney's have successfully worked on, negotiated and litigated thousands of criminal and DUI cases in each courthouse throughout Los Angeles County.

Criminal and DUI cases are not cut and dry. There are many factors that ultimately decide the outcome of a case. Some of the biggest factors include: the specific courthouse your case is out of, the judge presiding over your case, the District/City Attorney presiding over your case, and the type of representation your attorney provides.

As a former Los Angeles District Attorney, our Senior Attorney of Counsel, Marcus Musante, has a unique perspective unlike most- he knows the judges and the District/City Attorney's (the "other side") and he knows them well. This type of experience is invaluable when fighting to get our clients the best results because sometimes "whom you know" can be just as important as "what you know."

With a combination of over 25 years of representing clients in each courthouse throughout Los Angeles County and our insight on how the District/City Attorney's and judges handle all criminal and DUI cases, the Los Angeles Criminal and DUI Defense Firm is one of the most experienced criminal and DUI defense firms throughout Los Angeles County and Southern California.


The attorney representing you can have all the experience in the world, but what good is that experience if your attorney's representation isn't effective? Often times, older attorney's who have been practicing criminal and DUI law for years on end are jaded by the system and lack the desire to put in the time and effort that is required to effectively represent clients.

At the Los Angeles Criminal and DUI Defense Firm, we pride ourselves in effective representation, which is driven by our client-centered approach, tired-less work ethic, and willingness to fight to get our clients just results. We are masters in developing individualized defenses, which are based on each clients life story, circumstances and goals.

Furthermore, our attorney's are truly passionate about criminal and DUI defense work. This isn't just a job to us. Seeking justice and obtaining the best possible results for our clients is the ultimate fulfillment for our firm. Our passion towards criminal and DUI defense work invokes effective representation, which in turn leads to successful results and satisfied clients.


Finding an attorney who is trustworthy is perhaps the most critical factor in your search for an attorney. We all know how serious criminal and DUI charges are. It can be the most frightening and vulnerable time of ones life. With that said, if you cannot trust an attorney, you absolutely CANNOT allow that attorney to represent you in a time of such great need.

We often hear stories of individuals who were "sold" on promises and guarantees upon meeting their attorney, but ultimately ended up dissatisfied and disgruntled with their attorney at the completion of their case.

The Los Angeles Criminal and DUI Defense was built on honesty, integrity and trustworthiness. No gimmicks, no phony sales-pitch, and no promises and guarantees just to convince you to retain our firm. From the moment you first speak with us to the completion of your case, our firm will provide you with the most honest assessments of your case at all times, even if it is information you don't want to hear. We firmly believe that a establishing a trustworthy relationship with our clients is the foundation to our success as a firm and our client's satisfaction upon the completion of their case.
Main Office
Main Office
18000 Studebaker Rd., Suite 700
Cerritos  CA  90703
  • (562) 505-9941

Marcus Musante

Marcus Musante began watching criminal jury trials while still in high school. Before graduating Boston University, he interned with the San Francisco Public Defenders Office, and, while still attending Loyola Law School, interned for the Federal Public Defenders Office and the Los Angeles District Attorneys Office, Hardcore Gang Division. As a law student, Marcus went undefeated in competition as a member of Loyola's nationally-ranked BYRNE mock trial team and graduated by delivering the student commencement speech in 2004.

Over the course of seven and a half years in the DA's Office, Marcus reviewed, prepared and prosecuted thousands of misdemeanor cases throughout Los Angeles County. These cases ranged from drug possession and petty theft to domestic violence and DUI's.

In addition to DUI's, Mr. Musante was entrusted to handle some of the most high-profile cases in the DA's Office, including First Degree Capital Murder and Aggravated Mayhem. Becoming seasoned in trial, with nearly 50 verdicts, Marcus left the Office in 2012 with an unparalleled 96% trial conviction record.

From 2004 - 2012, Mr. Musante worked in 6 courthouses and established close relationships with Judges, prosecutors and law enforcement officers that he maintains today.

Since 2012, Mr. Musante has been providing the highest level of defense representation for clients charged with all levels of crime. In August, 2016, Mr. Musante successfully convinced a Long Beach jury to return a Not Guilty verdict for his client who was wrongfully accused of Murder. Since then, Marcus has narrowed his focus to defending clients accused of crimes with the same success he has always enjoyed and has been listed as a "Top 100 Trial Lawyer" by the National Trial Lawyers.

"It is absolutely an advantage having been a prosecutor. Not only are the chances high I will know the Judge, the prosecutor and especially the prosecutor's boss, but I know the how, the where and the when of how the other side will approach the case. This gives us the advantage."

Shakti Vadgama

Shakti Vadgama was born and raised in Los Angeles County and earned his bachelor's degree from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). After graduating from UCLA, Mr. Vadgama attended California Western School of Law in San Diego. In law school, Mr. Vadgama developed a strong passion for advocating on behalf of individuals against entities that are in a position of power. Mr. Vadgama's first experience with criminal law came when he worked for the Chilean Ministry of Justice while studying and working abroad after his first year of law school in Santiago, Chile. In this position, he researched and briefed his supervising attorney on the United States use of the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) and whether Chile should implement such system.

Furthermore, Mr. Vadgama worked as a judicial extern in the criminal division of the San Diego Superior Court East County Division. As a judicial extern, Mr. Vadgama prepared bench memoranda for multiple judges on cases ranging from misdemeanors to serious felonies, providing his recommendation as to how each case should be determined when applying the facts to the applicable law. This experience provided Mr. Vadgama a unique insight and understanding on how the judiciary and the criminal courts operate. Mr. Vadgama also interned at a criminal defense firm, where he worked on various criminal cases and advocated on behalf of individuals serving life sentences at parole hearings. He helped and witnessed his supervising attorney win a parole hearing for an individual who successfully used the prison system to rehabilitate himself and change his life around after serving twenty-five years for second degree murder. This moment left a profound impact on Mr. Vadgama and made him realize that a career as a criminal defense attorney was his true calling.

Mr. Vadgama also worked as an honors instructor in law school, tutoring first year law students in legal research and writing. He earned this position upon receiving the highest score in his first year legal research and writing course.

After law school, Mr. Vadgama spent the first year and one-half of his legal career as a plaintiff's employment law attorney, advocating on behalf of employees in all employment related matters. In his stint as an employment law attorney, Mr. Vadgama successfully negotiated and litigated on behalf of hundreds of clients in both State and Federal court.

Since his brief stint as an employment law attorney, Mr. Vadgama has dedicated his career towards criminal and DUI defense work, his true passion.

Mr. Vadgama is licensed to practice law in all State courts throughout California and the United States District Court, Central District of California. Mr. Vadgama is also a member of the Los Angeles Bar Association, the Los Angeles Bar Association Criminal Justice Section, and the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice.

Lonnie McDowell

Mr. McDowell graduated from Southwestern Law School in Southern California with top honors. He was a member of the Dean's List and was the recipient of the Dean's Scholarship. Mr. McDowell was the Lead Articles Editor as well as a board member of the Southwestern Law Review in addition to being a teaching assistant and tutor for various Criminal Law classes.

While still in law school, Mr. McDowell served as a certified law clerk for the United States Attorney's Office, for the District of Nevada, working on the Organized Crime Strike Force. While with the USDOJ, Mr. McDowell handled daily criminal appearances on behalf of the U.S. Government as well as prosecuting DUI's at trail for which he was recognized as a skilled litigator. Mr. McDowell was also selected to intern in the United States District Court, Southern District of California for the Honorable Dean D. Pregerson.

As a criminal defense attorney, Ms. McDowell has successfully litigated, thousands of criminal cases ranging from simple misdemeanors to serious and violent felonies.

Mr. McDowell is a member of The American Bar Association, The Los Angeles County Bar Association, The Beverly Hills Bar Association, The Association of Southern California Defense Counsel, The Consumer Attorney's Association of Los Angeles, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

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