US Attorney General Jeff Sessions has asked the remaining 46 chief federal prosecutors left over from the Obama administration to resign, including Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara who had been asked to stay on in November by then President-elect Donald Trump.
A Justice Department spokeswoman confirmed the resignation requests applied to Bharara. However, it was not immediately clear if all resignations would ultimately be accepted.
Bharara was unsure where he stood because he did not know if the person who contacted him was aware that Trump had asked him to remain in office, according a source familiar with the matter. Bharara's office handles some of the most critical business and criminal cases passing through the federal judicial system.
US attorneys are political appointees, and the request from Trump's Justice Department is part of a routine process. Not every new administration replaces all US attorneys at once.
Bharara met with Trump in Trump Tower on Nov. 30. Afterward, Bharara told reporters the two had a "good meeting" and he had agreed to stay on.