Jeremy C. Gelb

Top rated Criminal Defense attorney in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Law Office of Jeremy C. Gelb
Jeremy C. Gelb
Law Office of Jeremy C. Gelb

Practice Areas: Criminal Defense, Appellate, White Collar Crimes; view more

Licensed in Pennsylvania since: 1980

Education: University of California College of the Law, San Francisco

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2019 - 2023

Law Office of Jeremy C. Gelb

Suite 206, The Benjamin Franklin
834 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107 Visit website


For more than 40 years, Jeremy has represented individuals who have been charged with criminal offenses in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in a wide variety of cases.  Some of those cases have involved high-profile prosecutions while others have resulted in significant victories for less well-known clients in state courts throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, including Philadelphia, Bucks, Montgomery, Chester and Lehigh Counties, and in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.  


In the 1990s, Jeremy represented an indicted co-defendant in the federal racketeering and conspiracy prosecution involving former alleged mob boss John Stanfa and others.  He subsequently served as co-counsel for the lead defendant in a wide-ranging RICO conspiracy prosecution pending in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey.


After graduation from law school, Jeremy moved to Philadelphia, and worked as an associate and a partner in the firm started by his mother, the late Marilyn J. Gelb, Esquire, a well-known and highly respected member of the criminal defense bar.  He worked on the landmark case of Cuyler v. Sullivan with his mother and with co-counsel, Norris E. Gelman, Esquire following the decision and remand of that landmark case from the U.S. Supreme Court.  The Third Circuit Court of Appeals eventually upheld the District Court’s finding that Sullivan was entitled to habeas corpus relief upon a showing that his lawyers had labored under an actual conflict of interest in the dual representation of Sullivan and two co-defendants, thereby depriving him of his sixth amendment right to the effective assistance of counsel.  The Sullivan case has been widely cited as the legal standard for resolving ineffective assistance of counsel claims where an actual conflict of interest adversely affects an attorney’s representation of a client.  


After opening his own firm over 30 years ago, Jeremy has continued to concentrate his practice primarily in area of criminal defense, both state and federal, including grand jury investigations, trials, sentencing proceedings, direct appeals and post-conviction proceedings.  He has substantial experience in defending against a wide array of complex criminal prosecutions, including charges involving capital and non-capital homicide, attempted murder and aggravated assault, home invasion robbery /burglary, sex crimes, offenses involving the trafficking (federal) and distribution (state) of illegal drugs, firearms offenses, organized crime investigations and prosecutions, RICO / racketeering and conspiracy, financial crimes, fraud, securities offenses, and election law violations.  Jeremy also has extensive experience representing clients who have pleaded guilty or have been convicted of crimes, and he has achieved excellent results in securing downward departures and variances at sentencing, thereby significantly reducing or eliminating the amount of jail time that his clients would otherwise have received under the previously mandatory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.  


Jeremy is honored at his Super Lawyers selection beginning in 2019 as well as his selection in 2013 to 2021 to join the "Top 100 Trial Lawyers", where membership is obtained by special invitation from The National Trial Lawyers and extended only to those "Top 100" from every state who exemplify superior qualifications of leadership, reputation, influence, stature, and profile as trial lawyers.  During the past 18 years between 2003 and 2021, Jeremy has received the highest (AV) rating for ethical standards and professional ability by Martindale-Hubbell. He is also very honored to have been recognized as a "Super Lawyer" in 2019 and 2020 and also continues to maintain a “Superb” rating by Avvo.


Jeremy is most appreciative of the wonderful reviews posted by his clients and also by fellow lawyers on

Practice areas

Criminal Defense, Appellate, Criminal Defense: White Collar

Focus areas

Appeals, Arrest & Arraignment, Assault & Battery, Criminal Domestic Violence, Criminal Fraud, False Accusations, Felony, Misdemeanor, Theft

  • 60% Criminal Defense
  • 20% Appellate
  • 20% Criminal Defense: White Collar

First Admitted: 1980, Pennsylvania

Professional Webpage:

Pro bono/Community Service:
  • Jeremy’s commitment is that each and every client, regardless of his station in life or his economic status, is entitled to the highest standards of excellence in terms of their legal representation.  In many instances, the results Jeremy has produced have had a significant impact upon the lives of the clients he has had the privilege to represent.  Throughout his career, Jeremy has provided pro bono representation on behalf of indigent clients, including those afflicted with AIDS, citizens who have been deprived of their civil rights, and most recently, veterans who have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of their service in Iraq and Afghanistan.  
  • A verdict of involuntary manslaughter and a probationary sentence in a prosecution of a mother in the shaken-baby death of her infant child where the Commonwealth had sought a conviction for murder, but defense experts refuted the prosecution’s scientific evidence.
  • The reversal of a client’s attempted murder conviction of a police officer where the defense was able to demonstrate that a tragic mistaken identification of the defendant had occurred before trial, and that the actual perpetrator had confessed his role in the offense while incarcerated for another offense.
  • A decision by homicide investigators not to charge a woman who was a suspect in the unsolved murder of a well-known physician in Center City Philadelphia.
  • An agreement to dismiss all pending charges against a young man arrested in connection with robbery and firearms charges provided he remained arrest-free and successfully completed his first year of college.
  • An agreement not to prosecute an individual suspected of trafficking crack cocaine where exculpatory evidence was brought to the attention of federal investigators who ultimately chose not to seek an indictment against the client.
  • A non-custodial sentence following a guilty plea in federal court to conspiracy to distribute cocaine base on behalf of a client, notwithstanding that the federal sentencing guidelines called for a substantial jail sentence.
  • An outright acquittal of a young man accused who was prosecuted for aggravated assault and robbery stemming from the so-called “Fat Tuesday” riots on South Street, Despite an identification of the client by the victim of the assault, the defense presented a complete alibi consisting of eight witnesses who, together, eliminated the accused as the perpetrator.
  • The acquittal of a prison guard following a jury trial on federal civil rights charges stemming from the beating of an inmate in a Philadelphia county correctional facility. Under Jeremy’s guidance, the prison guard testified in his own behalf, and helped convince the jury that he did not participate in a conspiracy to harm the inmate.
  • The reversal of a conviction for first-degree murder where the defense at trial failed to include critical eyewitness evidence that would have allowed a jury to infer that the accused, while present on the scene, had absolutely no role in the murder. Following the reversal of the defendant’s conviction on ineffective assistance of counsel grounds, Jeremy re-tried the case, and the defendant was acquitted of all charges. His client went home after spending over six years in jail for a crime he did not commit.
  • The outright acquittal following a jury trial of a man who was wrongfully accused of robbery, burglary, assault and weapons violations. The defense investigation revealed that the identification of the accused was tainted by improper and suggestive procedures used by police to secure an arrest, and after only one hour of deliberations, the jury voted to acquit the defendant of all charges.
  • Highest Rating (AV) for Legal Ability & Ethical Standards, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Honored for Criminal Defense, Super Lawyers
  • Honored among the "Top 100 Trial Lawyers", The National Trial Lawyers
  • "Superb" Rating, Avvo
Bar/Professional Activity:
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Criminal Justice Act Panel for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania 
  • Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Federal Criminal Bar Committee
  • Supreme Court of Pennsylvania
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • United States Supreme Court
Educational Background:
  • Harvard University, Bachelor of Arts degree in Government, Graduated cum laude, May 1976
  • University of California, Hastings College of the Law, Juris Doctor, May 1980, Honors: Hastings Law Journal, Research Editor

Office location for Jeremy C. Gelb

Suite 206, The Benjamin Franklin
834 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Phone: 215-922-2415


5 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2019 - 2023

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