Ron Cordova

Ron Cordova

Irvine, California

Ron Cordova is an experienced and well-respected criminal defense attorney. He has successfully represented clients in a wide array of state and federal criminal matters, including homicides and other violent offenses such as assault, battery, robbery, drug charges, theft and white collar offenses, alcohol-related charges and juvenile cases. Please see the practice areas page of this website for further information on Mr. Cordova's areas of expertise.

Ron Cordova represents clients in Orange County as well as statewide and nationally, devoting personal attention to each client's case. He combines skill, compassion and aggressive representation to provide the highest level of legal service. With more than 40 years of criminal law and jury trial experience, Ron Cordova has a well-deserved reputation for obtaining outstanding results in even the most difficult and challenging cases. He has tried more than 150 cases to verdict and maintains a truly national practice, having represented clients in 34 states and the District of Columbia as well as several foreign countries. Despite such prominence, Ron remains accessible to his clients and does not pass their cases off to associates.

Ron Cordova is a distinguished criminal defense lawyer. He has been named a "Southern California SuperLawyer" eleven times since 2007 and has received the highest possible rating of "AV" from Martindale Hubbell, the national directory of attorneys, confirming his preeminent legal ability and the highest ethical standards.

Ron Cordova has been recognized by Newsweek Magazine in 2011, 2012 and 2013 as one of the best criminal defense attorneys nationwide. He has also been recognized as one of the top five criminal defense lawyers in Orange County by OC Metro Magazine every year since 2009. Ron is also listed in Who's Who in America and Who's Who in American Law.

Ron Cordova is a former Orange County deputy district attorney and a former member of the California Legislature. Additionally, he has served as a professor of criminal law in California and internationally. Ron has taught courses at the University of California, Irvine, the Institute of Comparative Law at the University of Szeged, Hungary, the University of Debrecen, Hungary, the University of Pecs, Hungary, the University of Maribor, Slovenia, Jan Masaryk University in Brno in the Czech Republic and Nicolaus Copernicus University in Torun, Poland.

Ron Cordova is admitted to practice before all state and federal courts in California as well as federal courts in Arizona, Colorado, Michigan and Texas. He has also been admitted pro hac vice in numerous jurisdictions throughout the United States.

Year Joined Firm

  • 1979

Areas of Practice

  • Criminal Defense
  • Criminal Law - State and Federal
  • DUI / DWI

Litigation Percentage

  • 100% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • California, 1972
  • U.S. District Court District of Arizona
  • U.S. District Court District of Colorado
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Texas


  • University of Southern California Law Center, Los Angeles, California
    • J.D. - 1972
    • Honors: American Jurisprudence Award in International Law
  • Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire
    • A.B. - 1967
    • Honors: With Distinction
    • Major: International Relations

Published Works

  • •Special Lecture in Comparative Law at Nicolaus Copernicus University, Torun, Poland: "Miranda in the post-9/11 Context" April 2010
  • •Analysis of California Supreme Court decision extending Boykin-Tahl waivers to prior convictions, "In re Yurko: Portent or Anomaly?" Orange County Bar Journal


  • Visiting Professor of Criminal Law, The Institute of Comparative Law at the University of Szeged, Hungary, the University of Debrecen, Hungary, the University of Pecs, Hungary, the University of Maribor, Slovenia, Jan Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic and Nicolaus Copernicus University in Torun, Poland, April 1, 2008 - Present
  • Adjunct Professor of Criminal Law, University of California, Irvine , September 1, 1981 - June 1, 1983

Honors and Awards

  • Named a "Southern California Super Lawyer", 2007 - 2011, 2014 - 2019
  • "AV" rated by Martindale Hubbell, 1998 - 2017
  • Time Magazine Leading Southern California Attorneys, 2012 - 2013
  • Newsweek Magazine Top Attorneys Nationwide, 2011 - 2013
  • OC Metro Magazine Top Five Criminal Defense Attorneys in Orange County, 2009 - 2016
  • Outstanding Young Men of America, 1976 - 1978

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • California Legislature, Vice-Chairman, Committee on Judiciary
  • California Legislature, Member, Committee on Revenue and Taxation
  • California Legislature, Member, Committee on Elections and Reapportionment
  • California Legislature, Member, Select Committee on Corrections
  • California Legislature, Member, Joint Committee on Revision of the Penal Code
  • State Bar of California, Member
  • Orange County Bar Association, Member
  • Newport-Harbor Bar Association, Member

Past Employment Positions

  • Orange County Deputy District Attorney, 1973 - 1976
  • Member of the California Legislature, 74th Assembly District, 1976 - 1978

Pro Bono Activities

  • Co-counsel in the jury trial of State of Tennessee v Byron Looper


  • Spanish
  • Swedish
  • German
  • The National Trial Lawyers
  • AV Peer Review Rated
  • Super Lawyers
  • OCMETRO: Top Five Criminal Defense Lawyers in Orange County
  • Newsweek Leading 2012: Criminal Defense Attorneys
  • Newsweek Nationwide 2013: Top Attorneys