Florida Senator Weighs in On Nominees for U.S. Attorney
By Andrew Ramonas | November 20, 2009 3:19 pm

Sen. George LeMieux (R-Fla.) met with a White House official earlier this month to discuss the U.S. Attorney recommendations for the Middle and Southern districts of Florida, the St. Petersburg Times’ Buzz blog reported yesterday.

George LeMieux (Gov)

George LeMieux (Gov)

LeMieux, who was appointed by Gov. Charlie Crist (R) after Sen. Mel Martinez (R) resigned in September, had a meeting with White House Counsel Greg Craig on Nov. 9, according to the blog. The senator’s office declined to comment to the Buzz about the meeting.

People close to Crist, who will run for Senate next year, are expressing concerns about Jacksonville, Fla., lawyer Harry Shorstein, who, according to the blog, is a finalist for the Middle District of Florida job.

We reported in September that the State Attorney for the state’s 4th Judicial Circuit, Republican Angela Corey, wrote to Martinez and Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) to ask them not to recommend Shorstein, who was her former boss at the office. Two years ago, Shorstein fired Corey and later spoke out against her bid for election to the state prosecuting job. But last year, Corey easily beat Shorstein’s former chief of staff in the bitterly contested election.

The current U.S. Attorney in the Middle District is Bush-administration holdover A. Brian Albritton.

Some of the finalists for the Southern District of Florida are also receiving additional scrutiny in Florida. We reported this week that Daryl E. Trawick, a judge in Dade County, once helped put phony court documents in the public docket at the request of state prosecutors, which could be a violation of state law. In addition, former Assistant U.S. Attorney David M. Buckner, another finalist for the U.S. Attorney post, played a role in a controversial terrorism case.

Jeffrey H. Sloman is the Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District.

Here are the finalists for the Middle and Southern district U.S. Attorney posts:

Middle District:

– Harry Shorstein, who is a partner at the Jacksonville law firm of Shorstein & Lasnetski where he works on white-collar crimes cases. He previously served as a Florida state attorney. He has also worked as a general counsel for Jacksonville and as a Naval judge advocate. Read his full bio here.

– Robert O’Neill, who was interim U.S. Attorney for the Middle District in 2008 and currently leads the office’s criminal division.

– Roger Handberg, who is an Assistant U.S. Attorney, in charge of the Middle District’s Orlando office.

Southern District:

– Wifredo Ferrer, who is an assistant Dade County, Fla., attorney.

– David M. Buckner, who is a partner at Miami’s Kozyak Tropin Throckmorton and a former Assistant U.S. Attorney.

— Daryl E. Trawick, who is a Dade County Circuit Court judge.

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