Justice Department bids to oust US prosecutor investigating Trump allies

The Justice Department has moved to oust a US official in Manhattan overseeing key prosecutions of President Donald Trump’s allies and an investigation of his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. The move to oust Mr Berman also comes days after allegations surfaced from former Trump national security adviser John Bolton that the President sought to interfere in a Southern District of New York investigation into the state-owned Turkish bank in an effort to cut deals with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The White House quickly announced that Mr Trump was nominating the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission to the job, a lawyer with virtually no experience as a federal prosecutor. Democrats have repeatedly accused Mr Trump’s Justice Department of political interference, and those concerns have also been pervasive among some rank and file officials in the agency. The office has also prosecuted a number of Trump associates, including Mr Trump’s former personal lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen, who served a prison sentence for lying to Congress and campaign finance crimes. The men were charged in October with federal campaign finance violations, including hiding the origin of a 325,000 dollar donation to a group supporting Mr Trump’s re-election.