Top Utah lawman who resigned amid scandal running after acquittal

FILE - John Swallow arrives at court, in Salt Lake City. Swallow, a former Utah Attorney General who resigned amid scandal filed Thursday, March 19, 2020, to take another run at his old job. Swallow was acquitted at trial, and said on a campaign website he's "prepared to return and finish his vision ... better prepared to protect Utahns from the abuse of their rights by the government," the Salt Lake Tribune reported. Salt Lake City, Utah, July 30, 2014 | Photo by Rick Bowmer via the Associated Press, St. George News

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A former Utah attorney general who resigned amid a public corruption scandal filed Thursday to take another run at his old job.

John Swallow was acquitted of bribery charges at trial and said on a campaign website he’s “prepared to return and finish his vision … better prepared to protect Utahns from the abuse of their rights by the government,” the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

He compared the allegations against him to the investigations into President Donald Trump.

Swallow did not immediately make further comment.

Former Utah Attorney General John Swallow | Stock image, St. George News

He is the second Republican to challenge current Attorney General Sean Reyes, who was first appointed to replace him after his resignation in 2013. Utah County Attorney David Leavitt is also in the running for the GOP nomination. Democratic defense attorney Greg Skordas and Kevin Probasco are vying for that party’s nod.

Swallow has adamantly denied breaking any laws and said he stepped down because the scrutiny had become too much for him and his family.

He served as a state lawmaker and ran unsuccessfully for Congress before joining the attorney general’s office and rising to lead it.

Swallow and his predecessor Mark Shurtleff were accused of hanging a virtual “for sale” sign on the door to the state’s top law enforcement office by taking campaign donations and gifts like beach vacations in exchange for favorable treatment. The criminal case against Shurtleff was dropped, and Swallow settled for $1.5 million after being acquitted at trial.

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