Courts • Defendant in felony fraud probe has leveled accusations of bias.
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Acting Utah County Attorney Tim Taylor sees no reason why the attorney general's lead investigator should be disqualified from assisting in the case against jailed businessman Marc Sessions Jenson after the attorney general's office and prosecutors were banned from the case over alleged conflicts of interest.
Taylor, who filed a motion in 3rd District Court this week, argued the investigator was never accused of having any conflicts of interest and is a necessary piece of the prosecution's case against Jenson.
If a judge were to order the investigator off the 2-year-old case, Taylor would have to start from scratch with resources he has said his office simply doesn't have.
Jenson, who has filed a battery of motions and other allegations against members of the A.G.'s office and their prosecution team, has alleged conflicts of interest due to claims that Attorney General John Swallow and his predecessor, Mark Shurtleff, orchestrated a "shakedown" of Jenson for cash, favors and luxury treatment at Jenson's Southern California villa.
Defense attorney Marcus Mumford has insisted the A.G.'s lead investigator is biased by association and should also be booted from the case.
Third District Judge Elizabeth Hruby-Mills will rule on whether or not the investigator can stay on in a written decision, which she will file in coming weeks.
Jenson, who is accused of felony fraud and money-laundering over his now-defunct plans to develop a Beaver County resort known as the Mount Holly Club, is scheduled to stand trial in February, along with his co-defendant Stephen R. Jenson, according to court documents.