PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. Senate has confirmed President Joe Biden’s choice to be the top federal law enforcement officer in Arizona.
Gary M. Restaino was confirmed as the United States Attorney for Arizona on Friday. He has been a federal prosecutor in Arizona since 2003 and was previously the chief of the criminal division and the white collar crime section. He has also worked as a trial attorney for the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section.
Arizona’s two Democratic senators, Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly, praised the confirmation.
“Gary Restaino brings decades of experience as a federal prosecutor in Arizona, and his unanimous confirmation reflects the Senate’s trust in his qualifications, expertise and commitment to the rule of law and to keeping Arizonans safe and secure,” they said.
Restaino worked on some of the highest profile cases of the past decade in Arizona, including the prosecution of former Fiesta Bowl executives in a scheme to make illegal campaign contributions to politicians. He also was among the lawyers who successfully prosecuted former U.S. Rep. Rick Renzi for extortion and bribery in connection with a federal land swap deal. Renzi, a Republican, was later pardoned by President Donald Trump on his last day in office.
Before joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Restaino was a civil rights lawyer for the Arizona Attorney General’s Office and represented farmworkers for a Phoenix-based legal aid service. He also served in the Peace Corps in Paraguay.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona had been led by Glenn McCormack, the office’s 1st assistant U.S. attorney, since April.
Biden nominated Restaino last month. He is a 1996 graduate of the University of Virginia law school.