Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee said he will conduct an evidentiary hearing Thursday to consider a Trump co-defendant’s motion to disqualify Fulton County Prosecutor Fani Willis , and his office to pursue the 2020 Georgia election interference case and drop everything. the accusations against him.
Michael Roman, a former Republican National Committee staffer, alleged that Willis had awith Special Prosecutor Nathan paid her more than $650,000 for her work for the DA’s office and later benefited financially from the relationship when Wade allegedly took her on cruises and trips.
Judge Scott McAfee, who is presiding over Trump’s election interference case, declined to quash subpoenas for Willis, Wade and other witnesses on Thursday, but it is unclear whether they will be invited to bear witness. McAfee said he would defer that decision until he looks further in Thursday’s hearing.
Judge McAfee said the evidentiary hearing must take place because it is “possible that the facts alleged…could result in disqualification” and “an evidentiary hearing must take place to establish the case on these primary allegations”.
He listed the questions as follows: whether a relationship existed, whether it was romantic, when it formed, whether it is continuing, and any personal benefits resulting from the relationship.
But he also said some of the arguments made by Roman’s lawyer are irrelevant, such as Wade’s alleged lack of experience handling racketeering cases like the Trump case.
“As long as a lawyer has a heartbeat and a bar card,” the appointment of that lawyer is at the discretion of the prosecutor, McAfee said.
He also did not find any violations of the Fulton County Code of Jurisprudence that would be relevant to a motion to disqualify a prosecutor for a pending criminal case.
Anna Cross, an attorney for the Fulton County district attorney, sought to quash motions seeking testimony from Willis and Wade, arguing that the defense was “not bringing you law,” that it was “bringing you gossip.” ” and that the court should not tolerate it. She said the prosecutor’s office, in its brief last week, argued there was no basis to dismiss the indictment. And she said that of all the witnesses subpoenaed, none have relevant information.
In August, a Fulton County grand jury indicted Trump and more than a dozen of his associates on election fraud, racketeering and other charges related to alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election., including three lawyers involved in efforts to subvert the Georgia election. Trump and the other defendants have pleaded not guilty.
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