Mark Shurtleff and also John Swallow , former Utah former AGs are charged with bribery.
After investigating for more than a year, authorities on Tuesday arrested two former Utah attorneys general on charges of bribery, misusing public funds and other counts. Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill on Tuesday laid out allegations against John Swallow and Mark Shurtleff that involve gold coins, luxury houseboats and jets and thousands of dollars in cash or campaign contributions. Swallow and Shurtleff, both Republicans, have denied wrongdoing and the accusations against them.
Here’s some highlights of the allegations:
Authorities said both Swallow and Shurtleff used a luxury jet and personal property belonging to a businessman indicted on federal fraud charges. Swallow also used the businessman’s million-dollar houseboat on Lake Powell.
In another case from 2008, Shurtleff negotiated a plea deal for a Utah businessman facing fraud charges that was so lenient a judge wouldn’t accept it. After a more stringent deal was reached and the businessman was on probation, he put up Shurtleff and Swallow at a high-end Newport Beach resort and bought them meals, rounds of golf, clothing and massages, prosecutors said.
When Swallow left his job at a Utah payday loan company to join the attorney general’s office, his employer gave him 12 one-ounce gold coins, court documents said. While he was a chief deputy in the attorney general’s office, Swallow sold back the coins one or two at a time to the same former employer, receiving $17,000 in all, which is more than they are worth, Gill said.
In 2012, the attorney general’s office intervened in a lawsuit against a Bank of America subsidiary on behalf of thousands of Utah residents facing foreclosure. The Salt Lake City-area couple that brought the suit then spent $28,000 holding a campaign fundraising party for Swallow. The couple’s individual case was settled favorably, but Shurtleff in December directed the attorney general’s office drop the state case, despite objections from staff attorneys. Prosecutors said a division chief in the Utah attorney general’s office reported Swallow indicated to Bank of America that Utah would drop the case if the couple’s case was settled favorably. Shurtleff later accepted a position with a Washington, D.C., law firm that represented Bank of America.
Here is the press conference of the charges. Click here.