The district attorney’s office in Fulton County, Georgia, is seeking to have subpoenas of top prosecutors in the case of former President Trump’s alleged interference in the 2020 election dismissed. The subpoenas would require these prosecutors to testify at a hearing next week to determine whether they should be removed from the case.
One of Trump’s co-defendants in Georgia has issued subpoenas for Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis (D), special prosecutor Nathan Wade, and several of their colleagues. The co-defendant made the accusations of romantic ties between Willis and Wade. The hearing is set for February 15th.
Both Willis and Wade confirmed last week that they had a “personal relationship.” However, the district attorney’s office dismissed the calls to step aside as unfounded and stated that a hearing is unnecessary.
In a motion filed on Wednesday, the district attorney’s office strongly criticized the subpoenas, describing them as “ill-conceived” and based on “reckless accusations.” They urged Judge Scott McAfee to prevent Willis, Wade, and others from being compelled to testify at the hearing, stating that the subpoenas were unfounded.
According to special prosecutor Anna Green Cross, Georgia law and other authorities throughout the country disapprove of a procedure that allows one party’s counsel to force the testimony of opposing counsel and employees. There is no valid reason to deviate from this widely accepted principle.
The prosecution also accused defense counsel of trying to disrupt and delay the proceedings, according to the district attorney’s office.
According to prosecutors, the endeavor needs to be concluded without any delay.
In court documents filed last month, Mike Roman, a Trump 2020 campaign staffer and one of the former president’s co-defendants in Georgia, initially alleged that Willis had romantic connections with Wade.
Roman, Trump, and over a dozen other individuals are facing charges of racketeering for their alleged involvement in an unlawful conspiracy to overturn the 2020 election results in Georgia. This case is one of four criminal cases that the former president is currently dealing with, and he has pleaded not guilty to all 91 charges brought against him.
Willis and Wade acknowledged on Friday that they had developed a “personal relationship” after nearly a month. However, they maintained that they were only friends when Willis hired Wade in late 2021.
The Hill reached out to Ashleigh Merchant, Roman’s lawyer, and Steve Sadow, Trump’s lead counsel in Georgia, for comment.
Roman’s motion argues that the relationship between Willis and Wade undermines the validity of the extensive racketeering indictment against himself, Trump, and 17 others. He is requesting the judge to dismiss his charges and put a halt to the prosecution efforts by Willis, Wade, and the Fulton County district attorney’s office.
In addition to Willis and Wade, Roman has issued subpoenas to several investigative staff members at the district attorney’s office and other prosecutors who were involved in Trump’s criminal case. A subpoena was also sent to Wade’s divorce lawyer, and Roman is also requesting personal and business bank records for Wade and his law practice.
Trump and a few other defendants have joined the motion to remove Willis, while also highlighting other aspects of Willis’s conduct that they believe make him ineligible.
During a church service honoring Martin Luther King Jr., Sadow restated his belief that the district attorney’s office should recuse itself. He specifically pointed out comments made by Willis, implying that race played a role in the criticism faced by both her and Wade. In Sadow’s view, these remarks are evidence of prosecutorial misconduct.
In a statement, he expressed his belief that our filing presents a compelling argument against the District Attorney’s response. According to him, Georgia law both authorizes and requires the disqualification of the District Attorney due to her extrajudicial prosecutorial comments, which violate her special ethical responsibilities as a prosecutor.