Well, that was fast.
The assistant U.S. attorney who borrowed $46,000 from gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie when he was her boss in the prosecutor’s office — and then resigned after the loan surfaced as a campaign issue — has landed a gig at McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter, The Star-Ledger reports.
Michele Brown stepped down as acting first assistant U.S. attorney for New Jersey late last month, saying she didn’t want to be a distraction for the office. Christie made the loan when he was the state’s U.S. attorney — Brown was one of his top aides at the time — but omitted it from his income tax returns and mandatory financial disclosure reports.
Brown, who spent 18 years as a federal prosecutor, is slated to start at the Morristown-based McElroy on Sept. 14.
“We are very fortunate,” Walter Timpone, a partner at McElroy and a former federal prosecutor, told The Star-Ledger. “She is a consummate professional, talented and smart. We look forward to growing our health care and white-collar practice through the breadth of her experience.”
Timpone and Ralph Marra, New Jersey’s acting U.S. attorney, are close friends, the newspaper notes, and we’ve discovered more sinews between the firm and the increasingly acid New Jersey gubernatorial race.
Jersey City has hired Timpone to perform a legal audit of city’s development process in the wake of Operation Bid Rig. The Justice Department’s internal ethics watchdog is investigating Marra over remarks he made at a July 23 news conference announcing arrests of 44 people — including two mayors close to Christie’s Democratic rival, Gov. Jon Corzine — in the public corruption investigation. Marra said the “few people that want to change” New Jersey corruption “seem to get shouted down.” Democrats charged that the remarks were intended to boost Christie, who is running against Corzine on an anti-corruption platform.
Timpone and his firm also represented one of four hip-and-knee replacement companies, Depuy Orthopaedics, Inc., that entered into deferred prosecution agreements with the New Jersey office while Christie was U.S. attorney.
The DPAs — and one in particular — have dogged Christie during his campaign. He awarded the firm of former Attorney General John Ashcroft, his old boss, a contract worth up to $52 million to monitor another of the companies, Zimmer Inc. (Debra Yang, the former U.S. attorney for California’s Central District, won the monitoring contract for Depuy.)
Controversy over the arrangement prompted the Justice Department to adopt new rules for hiring monitors.