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Utah's U.S. Attorney John Huber, along with almost four dozen of his counterparts around the nation, offered his resignation last week as part of President Donald Trump's administrative transition.
On Wednesday, Huber learned he will continue as top federal prosecutor in the state for a while more Attorney General Jeff Sessions has decided to appoint him as interim U.S. attorney during the transitional period, according to Melodie Rydalch, spokeswoman for the Utah office.
Under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act, the interim appointment can last up to 120 days. If a U.S. attorney has not been appointed by the president and confirmed at the end of the 120 days, the federal court in the district can appoint someone to serve until the vacancy is filled.
"I am very grateful to President Trump and Attorney General Sessions for allowing me to continue my service as United States Attorney," Huber said in a written statement. "As a career prosecutor and public servant, this privilege to represent our nation is the pinnacle of my career."
It is customary for the nation's 93 U.S. attorneys to leave their positions once a new president is in office, but the departures are not automatic. Utah's Sen. Orrin Hatch played a role in extending Huber's time as U.S. attorney.
"I've been a strong supporter of John Huber for many years and was pleased that Attorney General Sessions and President Trump sought my advice regarding John's continued service in Utah," the Republican senator said. "I know he will continue to serve with honor and distinction."
Under Huber, the U.S. Attorney's Office prosecuted white collar defendants, including Jeremy Johnson whose allegations of an elaborate bribery scheme set off a political scandal involving two ex-Utah attorneys general and several cases involving polygamy, including food-stamp-related fraud. Recently, his office won a guilty verdict in the case of Roberto Miramontes Roman, who had been acquitted in state court for fatally shooting Millard County Deputy Josie Greathouse Fox in 2010.
A week before he offered his resignation, Huber announced that he would follow Sessions' lead in cracking down on violent crime.
"I am deeply committed to advancing the attorney general's priorities," Huber said in Wednesday's statement. "I was proud to be one of the first U.S. attorneys to launch a local anti-violence campaign inspired by his leadership. The #UtahGangInitiative will help protect our beautiful Utah communities from the worst of the worst violent offenders."
Last May, Huber was appointed to a national crime-fighting committee by then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch. The Attorney General's Advisory Committee helped shape the Justice Department's approach to fighting crime, countering national security threats and securing equal justice.
Huber was formally installed as the 37th U.S. attorney for Utah in August 2015, a few months after confirmation by the Senate. He took over from David Barlow, who left the position in July 2014 after three years in office to return to private practice.
Veteran federal prosecutor Carlie Christensen filled in after Barlow's departure; she also served in the position for nearly two years, in 2010 and 2011, when Brett Tolman, who was Barlow's predecessor, stepped down.
Huber, a Magna native, earned his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Utah. He worked for the Weber County Attorney's Office before an eight-year stint at the West Valley City Attorney's Office as chief prosecutor. Beginning in 2002, Huber was on loan as a special assistant U.S. attorney prosecuting firearms crimes. He became an assistant U.S. attorney in 2005.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.