A 229-page court motion filed Monday alleges Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis “has engaged in a pattern of prosecutorial, forensic misconduct” requiring her disqualification from overseeing the Georgia case against Trump co-defendant and former Georgia GOP Chair David Shafer.
The Feb. 5
motion, which has been adopted by ex-Coffee County GOP Chairwoman Cathy Latham, another Trump co-defendant, also requests the disqualification of Willis’ entire office and prosecution staff.
The latest filing on Shafer’s behalf came just days after Willis
admitted to having an affair with Nathan Wade, the married and ostensibly unqualified man she tapped to run lead on the Georgia case. It is the fourth motion filed since Jan. 8 to disqualify the Black Panther’s daughter.
The Feb. 5 motion to disqualify Willis rehashes many of the claims originally made in Roman’s Jan. 8 motion to disqualify concerning possible criminal wrongdoing and misconduct on the Democrat’s part, stressing that “all of the causes for the disqualification are self-inflicted blows.”
“The District Attorney’s employment of Mr. Wade to investigate and prosecute the defendants and payments to Mr. Wade of over a half a million dollars from the Fulton County treasury while allowing Mr. Wade to pay for vacations for the District Attorney and other personal expenses constitutes a disqualifying conflict of interest as well as a violation of ethical rules applicable to attorneys and Fulton County employees, and potentially criminal laws,” wrote Shafer’s lawyer, Craig A. Gillen.
Willis’ lawyers claimed Friday in
the state’s response to previous motions to dismiss and disqualify that she has no financial conflict of interest or personal conflict of interest that would justify her removal.
Whereas Wade said in an affidavit attached to Willis’ Friday response that expenses for their
romantic getaways “were roughly divided equally between us,” Shafer’s motion suggested otherwise — claiming receipts shared publicly show they “are not remotely ‘roughly’ equal,” reported the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Receipts in Wade’s divorce case revealed that the special counsel apparently blew $7,200 on airline tickets, hotels, and cruise reservations for trips he took with Willis. The Democratic DA, on the other hand, appears to have spent only $697 on airline tickets for their trip to Miami.
Wade has apparently been in a good position to pay more, having secured a
higher hourly rate with Willis’ office than at least one other special counsel and billed the county for over $728,000 in legal fees, which the DA conveniently signed off on.
Like the Trump’s
motion to disqualify, the Feb. 5 filing also suggests that Willis’ publicized statements “have been severely prejudicial to the defense.”
“Straying wildly from the legal guardrails which are designed to protect the accused from improper, extrajudicial comments by a prosecutor, the District Attorney, for over a year-and-a-half, has given multiple interviews where she has improperly labeled some of the defendants as ‘Fake Electors’ and commented on the righteousness of her investigation and prosecution,” said the motion.
According to the filing, Willis’
speech to a church congregation on Jan. 14 — where she characterized herself as a victim and intimated her critics were racists — was a tipping point.
The motion alleges that in addition to prejudicing possible jurors, violating her oath of office, and breaking ethics rules, Willis’ conduct constituted a breach of Georgia law concerning the employment of assistant district attorneys.
The Journal-Constitution indicated that Shafer has requested that Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee change the venue for his case’s later stages to a county that is not overwhelmingly Democratic to “ensure an impartial and less politically partisan jury.”
After all, the supermajority of Fulton County voters supported Joe Biden in 2020.
Extra to all the requests for her removal, Willis
also faces a Georgia Senate inquiry, pressing questions about possible improprieties from the county’s audit committee chair, an impeachment push in the state legislature, and a congressional investigation.
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