Feds end investigation into Swallow, Shurtleff

Posted at 10:00 PM, Sep 12, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-13 00:00:12-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- The federal government's investigation into Utah Attorney General John Swallow is now over, and no criminal charges will be filed against the embattled AG.

It's a victory for Swallow, who wore a smiling face after hearing the news from The Department of Justice that he's been cleared.

"I knew at the time I hadn't done anything wrong," Swallow said in an interview with FOX 13 News. "I don't know how you get any more clearer than that with the public integrity section of The Department of Justice."

Swallow faced allegations of bribery stemming from Jeremy Johnson, who was under federal review and still is. Then, months later, from Marc Jenson, a convicted felon who claimed Swallow and his predecessor, former AG Mark Shurtleff took favors from him.

Shurtleff spoke about the accusations.

"It does make me angry that the media, quite frankly, will put a guy I put in prison, a convicted liar who has ripped people off, and give them credibility to spout off his lies and then generate news story after news story; that does make me angry, quite frankly," he said in a phone interview.

While the accusations are in the rear view mirror for Shurtleff, Swallow is still facing several probes. Rep. James Dunnigan, R- District 39, is the chair of the House Investigative Committee that is tasked with not only looking into the criminal allegations against Swallow, but asking and answering: did the AG violate the public's trust?

"The mission of the committee has not changed," Dunnigan said.

Dunnigan said, despite the DOJ's findings, the legislature's job is far from over, a job which could potentially cost millions. The Republican said he doesn't think it's a waste of taxpayer dollars.

"I believe the public and the House of Representatives deserve to know what the facts are, and a lot of allegations have been made,” he said. “Are those factual or not? And I think the Attorney General deserves to know that."

While Swallows knows he's still under a microscope, the AG is confident about what happens next.

"I feel the same way about the continuing investigations as I felt about the last one,” he said. “We're going to cooperate fully, and when the truth is known they will know they can have an Attorney General they can trust."

Swallow is facing a number of probes, not just with the House Committee but also with Salt Lake and Davis Counties, in addition to the State Bar Association, which is reviewing complaints.