Jessica M. Karmasek Jan. 14, 2013, 8:35pm

SALT LAKE CITY (Legal Newsline) -- Utah Democrats are reportedly calling for an investigation into ethical claims against newly elected Attorney General John Swallow.

Swallow, a Republican, was elected in November to succeed Mark Shurtleff. He took office last week.

According to The Associated Press, state Democrats want a probe of allegations that Swallow helped set up a deal to stop a federal investigation into businessman Jeremy Johnson.

Johnson is accused of running a multi-million-dollar fraudulent software scheme in which he billed hundreds of thousands of consumers for products they never ordered.

Johnson has alleged the attorney general arranged a deal to pay U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to stop a federal investigation into his business.

"These are very serious charges that have been made about the highest levels of Utah's elected leaders," State Democratic Chair Jim Dabakis told the AP in a statement. "The people of Utah deserve to know if their elected officials are crooks or unethical."

Dabakis has asked U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate.

According to the AP, Swallow has denied the allegations. As Utah's chief deputy attorney general at the time, he said he merely offered to connect Johnson with a lobbying firm.

The Utah Democratic Party is asking residents to sign an online petition calling for an independent investigation of the matter.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at

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