By Kevin Tampone

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has hired a former prosecutor under ex-U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara to pursue public corruption cases.

Howard Master previously worked for Bharara as deputy chief of the criminal division in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York. He focused on public corruption cases, including the prosecution of former New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, according to the New York Daily News.

Schneiderman also has hired Eric Haren to work on public corruption cases, the News said. Haren was previously chief counsel to Democratic U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California.

Both new hires will prioritize taking on the administration of President Donald Trump and holding the federal government accountable, according to the News.

Schneiderman plans to explore whether Trump is violating a clause of the Constitution that some say bars Trump-owned businesses from accepting payments from foreign governments.

Schneiderman has been a frequent critic of Trump. He has already challenged Trump's immigration ban in court and is considering other lawsuits dealing with environmental protection and more, according to the News.

The attorney general has said repeatedly he will sue the administration if he believes it is necessary to protect the state's interests.

Bharara was fired earlier this month after refusing to resign when asked to by Trump. He was among 46 U.S. attorneys asked to resign who were holdovers from Barack Obama's administration.

Master will work on a wide range of civil and criminal investigations and enforcement matters, according to the Wall Street Journal. His title will be senior enforcement counsel.

(c)2017 Syracuse Media Group, N.Y.