Assistant attorney general resigns after memo blasting office

Article Courtesy of The Palm Beach Post

By Kimberly Miller

Published August 12, 2011

Andrew Spark, an assistant attorney general in the Tampa office of economic crimes, resigned yesterday following his release of a 16-page memo he wrote about multiple grievances he has with the Florida attorney general’s office.

Spark said his memo, which he e-mailed to media outlets, was motivated by the forced resignations of former state foreclosure investigators June Clarkson and Theresa Edwards. His concerns include former Economic Crimes Division Director Mary Leontakianakos taking a job in June with the Law Offices of Marshall C. Watson _ a firm formerly under investigation by the attorney general’s office. Leontakianakos resigned her director’s job in December with an effective date of Jan. 3.

Spark also mentions the resignation of former attorney general staffer Joe Jacquot, who went to work with Lender Processing Services _ another company under investigation by the state _ and concerns he has about his investigations of two process serving companies, inquiries he took over from Clarkson and Edwards when they left.

“The people of the State of Florida are entitled to fair and honest government, independent of personal connections and powerful interests,” wrote Spark, whi has worked for the attorney general for about seven years.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said Spark was the subject of an ongoing investigation for using the services of a business he was investigating.

“It is exceptionally troubling for the people of Florida that Spark’s memo disclosed information pertaining to active investigations into foreclosure-related businesses that could compromise those cases,” Bondi said.

Bondi said her office tried to place Spark on administrative leave while the inspector general investigated the public dissemination of information on active investigations, but he resigned before they could do so.

Spark said Tuesday he had a feeling he would be fired after his memo went out.

“I’m certainly taking a chance,” he said. “But I feel like almost everything I’ve tried to accomplish there has been squelched.”

Attorney General’s office to investigate dismissals

Bondi faces call for inquiry into forced resignations of two state lawyers

State rips job quality of two fired foreclosure fraud investigators

Attorney general's ouster of 2 top investigators raises troubling questions