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Trump Taps Former Giuliani Partner As Preet Bharara Replacement

Geoffrey Berman Photo Credit: Greenberg Traurig
Preet Bharara Photo Credit: @PreetBharara
Joon Kim Photo Credit: U.S. Attorney's Office

President Donald Trump has nominated a former law partner of New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani to serve as United States Attorney Preet Bharara’s replacement in the Southern District of New York.

If confirmed by the Senate in the next 120 days, Geoffrey Berman will take over for Bharara, who was fired last March by the president as he cleaned house from the Obama era. He will serve as an interim basis until confirmation, according to the Justice Department.

Berman is a partner at Greenberg Traurig in Manhattan, where Giuliani remains a partner. He previously served as an Assistant United States Attorney from 1990 to 1994.

Bharara, a Westchester resident, was fired by Trump’s administration last year and replaced by Joon Kim, who served on an acting basis until Berman's selection.

“United States Attorneys lead federal prosecutions across this country, taking deadly drugs and criminals off of our streets and protecting the safety of law-abiding people, as well as representing the United States in civil litigation.” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “As a former U.S. Attorney myself, I have seen firsthand the impact that these prosecutors have and it is critical to have U.S. Attorneys in place during this time of rising violent crime, a staggering increase in homicides, and an unprecedented drug crisis.”

Berman was one of 17 appointments of federal prosecutors as interim United States Attorney on Wednesday.

“I am appointing 17 current and former federal prosecutors to serve as U.S. Attorneys on an interim basis. Each has excellent prosecution skills and the temperament necessary to succeed in this critical role—and they have already proven that with a number of accomplishments on behalf of the American people,” Sessions added.

“I want to thank them for stepping up to take this difficult but noble job.  I also want to thank those First Assistant United States Attorneys who temporarily stepped up to lead their offices as Acting U.S. Attorneys and who are now returning to their roles as First Assistants.”

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