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“I’ve never measured success through a dollar amount.”

LaHood & del Cueto, P.L.L.C. is a law firm located in San Antonio, Texas. Founding Partners Nico LaHood and Andrew del Cueto have established themselves as two of Texas’s premier criminal defense attorneys. Perhaps best known for their defense of DWI charges, Nico and Andrew also regularly handle all types of criminal cases.

MO: What inspired you to launch your business?

Andrew: My background came from working for governmental entities. Many times I felt the most important thing I could do as a public official was overshadowed by needless bureaucracy. To me this was very much form over function. I did not appreciate supervisors instructing me on how I should prepare my cases when they spent little or no time understanding the complexities of the litigation. I could not appreciate the fact that hard work and tenacity were not valued assets in these government environments. I realized that there was a certain comfort to having a steady paycheck and if truth be told you could work as little as you wanted to and receive the same salary. I wanted an opportunity to “eat what I killed” and suffer from my failures but bask in my successes. I enjoy practicing law and I believe benefiting from hard work is the American dream and in order to see the real rewards of my hard work, I had to start my own firm where some of those barriers were removed.

MO: Do you have any recent success stories that you’d like to share with our readers?

Andrew: We had a case in a jurisdiction where we had never practiced. The judge and the district attorney were extremely conservative. They continued to answer all of our requests with a “no” and they fought us on every issue regardless of the law. The district attorney seemed unmoved with arguments of actual innocence and was determined to sentence my client to prison. The best tool against the impossible is hard work, and we were dedicated to giving this case everything we had. We worked nights, weekends and holidays. We tirelessly submitted briefs and prepared for cross-examination. We took a hands on approach with all the evidence in the states possession and left no stone unturned. In the end we outworked and out thought our opponent and in turn we literally saved our clients life. Those moments are the days I’m grateful for our team and what I do for a living.

MO: Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?

Andrew: I’ve never measured success through a dollar amount. An elder attorney once told me, “be the best attorney you can be and the money will follow.” Till this day I live by this philosophy. I received notoriety and the respect of judges, fellow attorneys and most importantly, my clients. I believe that there is no greater success than having people entrust in you that which they hold most sacred, their liberty, based on your reputation and the results you have accomplished preceding them.

MO: How do your competitors view you?

Andrew: My competitors view me as the nicest, politest, pain in the ass they have ever experienced. They may be smarter than me but they know that they will never outwork me.

MO:  What’s the most important thing about your business?

Andrew: To do what’s right, to fight for those who cannot fight for themselves, and to give every ounce of energy to ensure that my clients rights are protected. These factors are more important than my business relationships and my financial gain. If I lose sight of these objectives I lose sight of why I became an attorney.

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