Politics
5:13 pm
Thu December 19, 2013

House Investigative Committee Reports Swallow Obstructed Investigation

In a day long meeting, special counsel Steve Reich revealed information that former Attorney General John Swallow intentionally created and deleted data in an effort to mislead the Utah House investigation.

Special counsel Steve Reich says that at almost every turn John Swallow was actively working to prolong or hinder the committee’s investigation. During his presentation that lasted for several hours, Reich pointed to a string of events that occurred after Swallow met with Jeremy Johnson at a Krispy Kreme on April 30, 2012. Johnson recorded the meeting. In it, he accuses Swallow of using pay-to-play tactics.

“We believe that the evidence shows that Mr. Swallow panicked following the Krispy Kreme meeting, thinking about the consequences that would occur, in terms of his political run for Attorney General, if Mr. Johnson went public with these allegations," he says. "And that it was this panic that led him down the path of evidence elimination and evidence fabrication.”

One of Reich’s main points of focus was on the amount of data that went missing from Swallow’s work and home computers. During the past several months Swallow has insisted that a large amount of his emails went missing because the state migrated their email service from Novell GroupWise to GoogleMail. But after interviewing an IT worker from the AG’s office, Reich found out that wasn’t true. And only after he showed Swallow the interview did Swallow admit to knowing that he knew about the missing emails before the migration took place.

“This committee spent, literally, hundreds of thousands of dollars proving that the 2010 emails was not lost during the migration, when Mr. Swallow, quite obviously, knew all along what the truth was, yet he never said anything about it to this committee until he was absolutely forced to," he says. "This is an example of what I mean when I say that this committee’s investigation has been obstructed.”

Reich also says they gave Swallow plenty of opportunities to refute their evidence, but that he continually declined offers to be interviewed under oath. Instead, Reich was forced to exchange emails with Swallow’s attorney, Rod Snow, in order to get any information. Reich will continue his report to the committee on Friday morning.