Trump picks acting U.S. attorney to replace exiting Pak

Bobby Christine, U.S. attorney for Southern District of Georgia, will take over Atlanta office
Bobby Christine, appointed by President Donald Trump, has been tapped to replace Byung J. “BJay” Pak.



Bobby Christine, appointed by President Donald Trump, has been tapped to replace Byung J. “BJay” Pak.

The U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Georgia will take on additional duties and also serve as the acting U.S. attorney for North Georgia, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Bobby Christine, appointed by President Donald Trump as the top federal prosecutor for South Georgia, was tapped to replace Byung J. “BJay” Pak, who resigned Monday. Pak was also appointed by Trump.

But in a recorded weekend phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, Trump referred to a “never-Trumper U.S. attorney there.” Though Trump didn’t say Pak’s name, he repeated debunked accusations of voter fraud in Georgia, including in Fulton County. The Northern District of Georgia that Pak served includes both Atlanta and Fulton.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Trump issued a written order Monday naming Christine the acting U.S. attorney for North Georgia.

“U.S. Attorney Christine is currently the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia, and will remain in that position while assuming the additional role in the Northern District,” the Department of Justice said in an emailed statement.

Christine previously worked for a decade in the District Attorney’s office in Augusta. In 2005, he was appointed Columbia County magistrate court judge, a position he held until November 2017, according to information on the U.S. Attorney’s website. Christine served as the chief magistrate from 2009-2012 and also worked in private practice.

Messages left Tuesday morning at U.S. Attorney’s offices in Atlanta and Augusta were not immediately returned.

Byung J. “BJay” Pak resigned Monday.

Credit: Curtis Compton

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Credit: Curtis Compton

Christine earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia and his law degree from Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law in Birmingham. He is a veteran of the war in Iraq and began serving as an Army reservist at the age of 17. Christine’s current rank is brigadier general.

Federal Election Commission records show Christine has contributed to Trump’s re-election bid. In September, Christine made two donations of $2,800 each to the Trump campaign and to Trump Victory, which is run jointly by the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee.

Pak did not give a reason for his sudden resignation. But he said he was grateful for the chance to serve in the position.

“It has been the greatest honor of my professional career to have been able to serve my fellow citizens as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia,” Pak said late Monday in an emailed statement. “I have done my best to be thoughtful and consistent, and to provide justice for my fellow citizens in a fair, effective and efficient manner. I am grateful to President Trump and the United States Senate for the opportunity to serve, and to former Attorneys General (Jeff) Sessions and (William) Barr for their leadership of the department.”

— Data specialist Jennifer Peebles contributed to this article.