Georgia Judge to Hold Hearing on Allegations Against DA Fani Willis in Trump Case

Fulton County Superior Judge Scott McAfee is scheduled to preside over an evidentiary hearing on Thursday regarding allegations made against District Attorney Fani Willis in the high-profile racketeering case involving former President Donald Trump.

The hearing, set to begin at 9:30 a.m. and extend into Friday, will address claims raised by co-defendant GOP political operative Michael Roman earlier this year. Roman alleges that Willis engaged in an “improper” relationship with special prosecutor Nathan Wade, whom she hired to assist in prosecuting Trump.

These allegations, echoed by three subsequent co-defendants, have prompted concerns about a potential conflict of interest. Willis has acknowledged a “personal” relationship with Wade but has denied any conflict that could compromise the case. She has argued that, under Georgia law, a district attorney can only be disqualified if the conflict of interest adversely affects a defendant’s case.

Judge McAfee, appointed by Republican Governor Brian Kemp in 2021, indicated that depending on the evidence presented during the hearing, Willis could indeed be disqualified from the case if a conflict is substantiated. McAfee emphasized the need to establish a factual record to resolve the conflicting evidence regarding Willis’s alleged impropriety.

The judge noted that the motion filed by defendant Roman alleges a personal relationship between Willis and Wade, resulting in a financial benefit to the district attorney. McAfee stressed the importance of determining the existence and extent of any financial benefit to assess the potential impact on the case’s integrity.

Ashleigh Merchant, attorney for Michael Roman, will be at the forefront of presenting evidence during Thursday’s hearing. Merchant aims to demonstrate sufficient grounds for disqualifying Willis and her legal team from prosecuting the case against Trump.

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The outcome of the evidentiary hearing could significantly influence the trajectory of the legal proceedings, underscoring the importance of thoroughly examining the allegations against Willis and upholding the integrity of the judicial process.

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