A top aide to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has been nominated by President Donald Trump to become Maryland’s next U.S. Attorney.
Robert Kyoung Hur, 44, since June has worked as principal badociate deputy attorney general under Rosenstein, who was the top federal prosecutor in Maryland from 2005 until his appointment earlier this year to the No. 2 post in the Justice Department.
“Rob Hur is a brilliant lawyer who consistently demonstrates exceptional civility, professionalism and humility,” Rosenstein said in a statement. “As Maryland’s next United States Attorney, he will maintain the high standards of the office, coordinate effectively with our partners, and bring renewed energy to reducing violent crime and achieving other priorities.”
Hur served as an badistant U.S. attorney in Maryland for seven years, from 2007 and 2014, and if confirmed would take over an office that has been relied on to fight violent crime and corruption in Baltimore. The office has regularly brought sweeping indictments against gangs and public officials, and is looked to for tougher sentences for gun-carrying repeat offenders.
Among the high-profile pending cases are the prosecution of members of the Baltimore Police Gun Trace Task Force, and a drug crew that includes an alleged member charged with fatally shooting 3-year-old McKenzie Elliott.
During his seven years as a federal prosecutor in Maryland, Hur handled financial and regulatory offenses. Before that, he worked in the Justice Department as counsel to the badistant attorney general in charge of the criminal division, handling counterterrorism, corporate fraud and appellate issues.
One of the dozen cases Hur tried as a prosecutor involved the MS-13 gang. In July, Hur spoke at a White House briefing to discuss the Justice Department’s “aggressive efforts” to go after MS-13.
In a joint statement, Maryland U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen said they did not recommend Hur to the White House but are “impressed with his record” with the Justice Department and welcomed his appointment. They noted his time working with Rosenstein.
“We look forward to supporting Mr. Hur’s nomination and working with him should he be confirmed by the Senate. We are confident that Mr. Hur can fill the large shoes Mr. Rosenstein has left,” the senators said in a statement.
Hur, who lives in Silver Spring, earned a bachelor’s degree in English and American literature from Harvard and a law degree from Stanford.
He began his legal career as a law clerk for former Supreme Court Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist. He also served as a clerk for Judge Alex Kozinski in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Hur had two stints for the law firm of King & Spalding; during the first, he co-authored two papers on white collar crime with Christopher A. Wray, who is now FBI director.
In 2016, he successfully defended Vascular Solutions, Inc., a publicly traded medical-device manufacturer that was indicted on federal criminal charges relating to “off-label”promotion and acquitted of all charges.
Stephen M. Schenning, the first badistant U.S. Attorney since 2011, has run the office in the interim period following Rosenstein’s move to Washington.
Rosenstein was the longest-serving state U.S. Attorneys in the country, one of the only top prosecutors appointed by President George W. Bush to be kept on by the Obama administration.