SALT LAKE CITY — Prosecutors are asking a judge to block lawyers for ex-Utah Attorney General John Swallow from bringing up the companion case against his predecessor, Mark Shurtleff, or the Justice Department’s decision not to charge him with anything.
In court papers filed Friday and obtained by FOX 13, the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office tries to argue that they are not relevant to the corruption case against Swallow.
“Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings’s decision to dismiss Shurtleff’s case has no bearing on the present case against Defendant. The issues in the Shurtleff case and Mr. Rawlings’s evaluation of the case against Shurtleff do not make it any more or less likely that Swallow engaged in the alleged illegal conduct,” prosecutor Chou Chou Collins wrote in a motion in limine.
Swallow and Shurtleff were both arrested and charged with corruption related offenses, accused of accepting gifts and donations from people facing investigation by the Utah Attorney General’s Office. The Davis County Attorney dropped criminal charges against Shurtleff earlier this year.
The U.S. Department of Justice similarly declined to pursue a case against Swallow, but prosecutors said it has no bearing on the case the state of Utah is pursuing.
“The mere fact the DOJ declined to file federal charges should be accorded no significance in a case pursued by state prosecutors concerning state charges. The DOJ declines cases for a variety of reasons, and it is unknown why it declined to file charges against Defendant,” Collins wrote in a separate motion.
It is anticipated that Swallow’s defense team will oppose the motions. They have already asked a judge to dismiss the case against Swallow on other grounds.