Utah Speaker of the House Greg Hughes thrown into court with former Attorney General John Swallow

Posted at 11:05 PM, Jan 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-25 10:38:13-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- Utah Speaker of the House Greg Hughes had his name thrown into the court proceedings against former Utah Attorney General John Swallow Tuesday.

On the stand, Marc Jenson claimed he hosted Hughes and others at the Pelican Hill Resort in Southern California. Jenson also claimed he was told Hughes was taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in kickbacks.

Jenson is businessman who has served time in Utah prison related to a securities fraud case. He is a key witness against Swallow, accused of taking gifts, the AG's office was investigating.

Jenson testified on Tuesday, Hughes is the 'mystery man' he has referred to for a number of years to law enforcement.

In June 2009, Jenson says Hughes was with Mark Shurtleff, another former Utah Attorney General, during a visit to his villa at Pelican Hill.

"It wasn't until years later that I saw a picture of Greg Hughes and he was that man," said Jenson.

Jenson said Hughes name came up often in discussions with Shurtleff and Swallow. He alleges plans for UTA transit centers were starting in Draper because it was in 'Hughes home turf.'

Jenson also claimed Park City businessman Mark Robbins said Hughes and others on UTA's board were being paid.

"I was told by Mark Robbins that he had participated in making those cash payments to those board members including Greg Hughes," said Jenson.

Greg Hughes is Utah's current Speaker of the House. Hughes learned his name had been mentioned during the second day of the 2017 session, on the house floor. He said at first, he thought it was a joke, but he's no longer laughing.

"That man lied about me and I believe it's perjury," said Hughes.

Along with his staff, Hughes is putting together bank records, social media posts, emails and speaking engagement notes to show Hughes was never in California in May or June 2009.

"I have never in my life been to that resort, ever. If that man got on that stand, swore under oath that I was at the resort, he has perjured himself, he has broken the law," said Hughes.

Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill's office is handling the prosecution of Swallow. On the phone, Gill declined to comment whether or not they believe Jenson perjured himself. Gill did say, his office is only pursuing Swallow and has no investigation into Hughes.

"I have not been approached or spoken to law enforcement about any of that," said Hughes.

Jenson made his testimony in a hearing leading up to the trial of Swallow. It is likely when the trial begins, scheduled for February 7th, he'll make similar claims about Hughes.

"I testified truthfully, under oath, to things that I witnessed myself and I stand by what I said today," said Jenson.