William F. Weld, who resigned last month as chief of the Justice Department's Criminal Division because of Atty. Gen. Edwin Meese III's legal difficulties, on Wednesday joined the Boston law firm of Hale & Dorr as senior partner in the Washington office.
Weld, who as assistant attorney general and, earlier, as U.S. attorney in Boston emphasized white-collar crime prosecutions, said he will specialize in white-collar defense work.
In mid-September, Weld plans to move back to the Boston area and divide his time between the firm's home and Washington offices. He also will lecture weekly at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government in a course on criminal law and public policy.
Weld and former Deputy Atty. Gen. Arnold I. Burns, who resigned in unison over Meese's legal problems, met for 35 minutes with President Reagan and Vice President George Bush last week to detail their reasons for leaving.
Sources familiar with the session said Weld presented "an oral indictment" of Meese at the unusual session but noted that independent counsel James C. McKay has said he does not plan to seek an indictment of the attorney general.
Two of Weld's chief aides who quit with him, Mark E. Robinson and Jane E. Serene, are joining Hale & Dorr's Washington office as junior partners, Weld said.