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John Durham Resigns as U.S. Attorney, But His Investigation of the Russia Investigation Will Continue on


As expected, John Durham has resigned as U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut. Durham, appointed as Special Counsel by then-Attorney General Bill Barr two weeks before Election Day, will continue his investigation of the origins of the Russia probe.

“My career has been as fulfilling as I could ever have imagined when I graduated from law school way back in 1975. Much of that fulfillment has come from all the people with whom I’ve been blessed to share this workplace, and in our partner law enforcement agencies,” Durham said in a statement on Friday. “My love and respect for this Office and the vitally important work done here have never diminished. It has been a tremendous honor to serve as U.S. Attorney, and as a career prosecutor before that, and I will sorely miss it.”

Durham’s resignation will take effect at midnight on Feb. 28. Leonard C. Boyle will replace Durham as acting U.S. Attorney. Boyle was once honored along with Durham for high-profile prosecutions of corruption in law enforcement—particularly the case of mobster Whitey Bulger’srogue” FBI handler John Connolly. From the Associated Press in 2004:

Boyle has also helped investigate and prosecute law enforcement officials who had corrupt relationships with criminal figures in Boston, including former FBI agent John J. Connolly Jr.

At a ceremony in Washington, D.C., Boyle, Deputy U.S. Attorney John H. Durham and 13 others were honored Wednesday for their efforts in that case. Boyle, who did not attend, and the others received the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service.

Most Donald Trump-appointed U.S. Attorneys were asked to resign after Joe Biden became POTUS. Unlike Durham, U.S. Attorney for the District of Delaware David C. Weiss was not asked to resign—given the federal investigation of the president’s son Hunter Biden.

During confirmation hearings, lawmakers repeatedly asked Merrick Garland, Biden’s nominee for attorney general, about whether he would allow the Durham investigation to continue.

“I don’t have any reason, from what I know now—which is really very little—to make any determination on that ground,” Garland answered earlier this week. “But I have no reason to think he should not remain in place.”

“I understand that he has been permitted to remain in his position, and sitting here today I have no reason to think that that was not the correct decision,” Garland also said.

When asked if he would commit to making a Durham Report public, as was done with the Mueller Report, Garland said he would “have to talk with Durham and understand the nature of what he’s been doing and the nature of his report.”

The Durham probe has thus far resulted in one conviction and no prison time.

[Image via Fox News screengrab/DOJ]

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Matt Naham is the Senior A.M. Editor of Law&Crime.