José Manuel Galvão Teles (1938-2023)

It is with great sadness and sorrow that Morais Leitão announces the passing of its founding partner José Manuel Galvão Teles, at the age of 84.

A lawyer for sixty years, José Manuel Galvão Teles was since his early days committed to the construction and active struggle for democracy, as well as a politician convinced of the importance of fundamental rights and a dedicated and affectionate family man.

He founded Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva & Associados, a merger of leading law firms, contributing to a committed and loyal law practice at the service of clients, within the framework and defence of a liberal and democratic rule of law. He always eyed the practice of law as a continuation of his exercise of citizenship, alongside the political, social, human and cultural dimensions of life, having been justly honoured with the Medal of Honour from the Portuguese Bar Association in 2010.

His experience in the Portuguese legal profession is, in itself, a faithful representation of our country's political and economic history: having defended those accused of political crimes during the Estado Novo, he later participated in international cases for peace and against Apartheid. In the democratic phase of Portugal, Galvão Teles consolidated a career dedicated to mergers and acquisitions, but also to litigation, having defended some of the most important civil cases heard in Portuguese courts and successfully prosecuted some of the most important and high-profile criminal cases.

José Manuel Galvão Teles was a Member of the Council of State, Portuguese Ambassador to the United Nations from 1975 to 1976 - a key period for the negotiation of the decolonization - and head of delegation in important political and economic-financial missions. In 2005 he was awarded the Grand Cross of the Military Order of Christ by the President of the Portuguese Republic, Jorge Sampaio, and very recently, in November 2022, he was decorated with the Grand Cross of the Order of Liberty by the President of the Portuguese Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.